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AT&T confirms they are still testing BlackBerry Bridge

By Adam Zeis on 19 Apr 2011 01:01 pm EDT
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While  AT&T is still blocking BlackBerry Bridge at this point, they have at least offered up an official statement on the matter. In case you missed it - AT&T is currently preventing its customers from download BlackBerry Bridge to use with the PlayBook. It appears that they still want to do some testing with the app before releasing it to customers. Spokesman Seth Bloom said:

AT&T is working with RIM to make the BlackBerry Bridge app available for AT&T customers. We have just received the app for testing and before it's made available to AT&T customers we want to ensure it delivers a quality experience for our customers. 

Why it wasn't tested before release day is beyond me, but hopefully it won't be a long process. AT&T is the only carrier holding back on offering up BlackBerry Bridge, so keep your fingers crossed that all goes well. For now if you're an AT&T customer you can grab BlackBerry Bridge OTA.

Source: Phonescoop

Reader comments

AT&T confirms they are still testing BlackBerry Bridge

51 Comments

Still testing what? All the other carriers are ok with it but not AT&T? They are probably testing how to get revenue from it lol :)

I agree with that. All they want is your money they do not care about customer service or the customer

You got it 100% right, make revenue and put limits on it. As usual at&t and its trashy business decisions.

Its actually not, its RIM being controlled by at&t on what apps they offer. Obviously, RIM just got owned by AT&T, and customers got owned by AT&T, who knows what crap they will bring up now, "bridge plan" for at&t customers haha for $20 a month.

That was my thought. Since this is very close to tethering, I'm betting they're "testing" and developing a way to differeniate the bridge from straight up tethering. This is the first tab that won't be required to be on the network and have a data plan.

RIM could simply host an OTA link somewhere else, too (i.e., like many of their other apps). Then say F-U to AT&T by putting that link in the App World description for BB Bridge. :)

Exactly!!! Plus no need to put it in the description... I'm sure RIM knew that the second you couldn't install it, google was your next stop... Where you would see Crackberry (or any other site) and point to the download of the file.

I really hope that RIM didn't put a "kill switch" for Bridge as a Service Book, as that would be AT&T answer if they really don't want people using it... (Which translates to Good bye AT&T and hello Verizon to me)

It translates to one of three things:
1) They want to charge for it, and are looking for ways to enforce that.

2) They want to test the application before supporting it to be sure it's not very buggy and generates a lot of calls to support.

3) They want to cut a deal with RIM for other stuff and they are using Blackberry Bridge as leverage.

i think this is exactly whats happening. because they're so douchy about their data services they're gonna try to leverage something for profit out of the bridge browser

My guess is they want a bigger cut of the Blackberry data plan. But honestly AT&T, I'm hardly ever going to use the bridge for web browsing. I truly believe that the bridge will have almost no impact on my data usage. It's nice to have but it isn't going to be what I use most often.

At least the iPhone is with Verizon so there is no need to AT&T to keep sucking Apple's d&^k.

Has anyone ever stopped to understand RIM business? It is totally different to Apple and Google where phones are concern.

RIM is in partnership with wireless carriers to offer RIM's BB phones and data services. RIM services include, Access to Email and the Internet using a BB Phone. Using a BB, your IP Address is registered to RIM, thus, your BB speaks to RIM Servers for Email and Internet. (Check the IP Address of your BB Phone). The wireless carrier is only channel used to get to RIM servers. When you sign up a data plan, you are essentially signing up to RIM with RIM pretty much giving the carrier a cut for using their network and selling RIM services.

With that said, AT&T trying to charge its customers for BB Bridge would seriously mean you are being double charged and customers of AT&T can take legal action with AT&T for it.

You can try this for yourself, dont take my word for it. Using the Bridge Browser, the playbook uses the same IP address as the phone (check it yourself) and are registered to RIM, which means you are accessing RIM servers for the service you are paying for (Email and Internet).

Now using your playbook, use the internet tethering option, then check again both your phone and playbook ip address, you will notice that they are now different. You will notice the playbook's ip address is registered to your carrier, which means your carrier is the one providing the internet at that point. The Carrier has a right to then charge you for it, since you are accessing their network and not paying for that.

The reason it is different with Apple and Google is because they only provide the phone, they do not provide any of the data services or internet. The carrier does.

AT&T is not at a loss for the Bridge Browser since it is not using AT&T Servers for the Internet, it is using RIM's.

Its still using AT&T infrastructure to pass through to RIM's server. Thats why carriers charge a plan for it, otherwise by your argument, RIM wouldnt need carriers at all for the data plan, and it wouldnt be AT&T charging for it, but RIM. RIM does not have antennas.

AT&T still has to route BB traffic through their infrastructure, which increases load and consumption of resources.
Obviously, the playbook can pull much more data than a blackberry, even if its using the blackberry browser APIs, it will generate more traffic and load than a blackberry.

Which is why AT&T blocked bridge, because their infrastructure sucks, and they need to test stuff before releasing it, otherwise there is a good chance internet service would be deteriorated, because instead of investing back into more load handling, they just limit or charge customers.

And once again, I ask why AT&T fans, like BGR, are baffled that we T-Mobile customers aren't happy with the "merger."

ATT sucks.

Staples had no one who knew squat about the Playbook. Couldn't get it turned on, and then couldn't get it registered.
Best Buy had two locked up and NO display on opening day. They were totally confused about the Bridge feature.

Piss poor marketing. I'm soooooooooo disappointed.

The sounds to me more like piss poor training, not marketing. That's why I don't shop Best Buy. A bunch of idiots there. There really should have been some in house training before the device launched. Seems that neither company thought the device was important enough to spotlight. Sad, the device is a step in the right direction for tablets and breaking mindset that everything has to be done exactly like (cr)Apple.

Seems reviewers are so blinded, they really can't how positive the BlackBerry Bridge feature is or how you really don't need a native email app on a tablet.

My bestbuy rep that helped me with my purchase this morning told me they had limited training and he only knows of advanced features because he researched it himself

Office Depot was good. I bought at Staples and took it back it had issues.

Only 2 or a few at Best Buy here as well and when I got there they were gone. Now we know why RIM didn't market. They've hardly made any! But it's all cool I've got mine. I love it and at the end of today the Playbook will be sold out. Not bad.

The one on display at the Staples here could not get pass the agreement screen and when I restarted it that turned it into a brick. Yesterday, my wife and I were in the store and my wife asked the sales associate if she will be able to do MS Office editing on it and the response was "it is the first professional grade tablet, so it should be able to". I had to do all I could to keep from laughing at the canned response.

Funny how AT&T never reviewed or tested BBM or Blackberry Protect. There are OTA sites that you can download Blackberry Bridge. I laugh when I think of what would happen if RIM had released the 3G version first, then AT&T would have pushed the app to all thier Blackberry customers....lmao

Translation "As soon as we can figure out how to block the bridge browser and/or charge for it, we'll let you have it" Until then suck it.

Has anyone ever stopped to understand RIM business? It is totally different to Apple and Google where phones are concern.

RIM is in partnership with wireless carriers to offer RIM's BB phones and data services. RIM services include, Access to Email and the Internet using a BB Phone. Using a BB, your IP Address is registered to RIM, thus, your BB speaks to RIM Servers for Email and Internet. (Check the IP Address of your BB Phone). The wireless carrier is only channel used to get to RIM servers. When you sign up a data plan, you are essentially signing up to RIM with RIM pretty much giving the carrier a cut for using their network and selling RIM services.

With that said, AT&T trying to charge its customers for BB Bridge would seriously mean you are being double charged and customers of AT&T can take legal action with AT&T for it.

You can try this for yourself, dont take my word for it. Using the Bridge Browser, the playbook uses the same IP address as the phone (check it yourself) and are registered to RIM, which means you are accessing RIM servers for the service you are paying for (Email and Internet).

Now using your playbook, use the internet tethering option, then check again both your phone and playbook ip address, you will notice that they are now different. You will notice the playbook's ip address is registered to your carrier, which means your carrier is the one providing the internet at that point. The Carrier has a right to then charge you for it, since you are accessing their network and not paying for that.

The reason it is different with Apple and Google is because they only provide the phone, they do not provide any of the data services or internet. The carrier does.

AT&T is not at a loss for the Bridge Browser since it is not using AT&T Servers for the Internet, it is using RIM's.

I have confidence that whatever AT&T tries to do to block Bridge (if they do), there will be a work around. If not, when my plan is up, I have been with them since Cingular days, we may have to look elsewhere. Hopefully the Torch 2 will not be locked up tight by ATT.

I hate AT&T, they only care about money not technology or the customer. They don't even have UMA technology another reason I left for T-Mobile. UMA ROCKS!!!

Lucky for me I have Verizon. Will I need to install the bridge app from the app world on my 9330 in order to use bridge and browse web on my paybook?

I've also been with At&t since the Cingular days, and overall I've been very pleased with my service for the most part until about a year ago. During that time is when my wife and I started to notice the unstable network performance and dropped calls. It has been bad since then. I stay with them because they seem to get the best Blackberries (In my opinion that is). I currently have the Blackberry Torch and I love it. I planned to buy the Playbook on the 19th until I read all of the bull that At&t was pulling with the bridge option. I was able to install the bridge app to my Torch a few days ago, thanks to Crackberry and the great links. So I decided to go to Best Buy today and play with their demo. The person and I both tried a number of times to get that Playbook bridged to my device and it just wouldn't connect at all, even though both the playbook and my Torch detected each other with no problem. If At&t is blocking this option, what's the point of any of their customers purchasing this tablet? NO POINT, RIGHT? Needless to say, I didn't purchase it. This is very sad if you ask me. I'm no longer excited about getting one anymore. Sorry RIM, this will affect your sales. If anyone with an At&t phone can get this bridge to work please let us know.

I was also pretty pissed about at&t dropping this bomb. Was actually the only reason I didn't buy a PB yesterday, got a kinect though. But I was furious when I saw the news on launch day that the bridge app would not be available. Luckily CB is awesome and I soon had bridge loaded on my phone. Today while shopping again I stopped in Best Buy and played with one of their display PBs. Fired up bridge and after trying the bar code scan(didn't work) I did a manual bridge setup and I was in. It had previously been a bridge virgin at the time. Received and sent a few emails and opened up a .xls file while I toyed around with it and all worked well. I just think I'm going to wait for more software and (sad to say it) more apps so I don't neccessarily have to use the browser for sites like fb and twitter. I actually hate being on the twitter site and don't care for facebook too much any more with all the ads and garbage on them now.

Side note: So a "little person" decided to look at tablets today and was next to me and neither of us could figure out how to turn on umm I think a xoom and a galaxy tab. Granted I already knew gestures for PB but if I press the power button it comes on. Those two did not and they showed full battery but that's it. I tried to show him what the PB was all about and gave him a little demo of cool stuff. I probably could have amazed the sales reps there with what I knew. Then my "little buddy" asked a rep where the ipads were and off he went. I miss him already :(

BRIDGE FROZE MY EXCHANGE SERVER ACCESS:
I tried to install Bridge OTA but my carrier, Rogers, was blocking it so I went to my PC and installed through USB which was a pain but worked great. From that moment my Torch could no longer access my company Exchange Server. No e-mails. No calendar. But I could connect to a PB in Staples.
Had to delete Bridge before I got my Exchange Server connection back.
Moral of the story: Maybe ATT is not so crazy. RIM has released some software that is still very buggy.

Yea, I dl it OTA bc AT&T blocked Bridge every other way, have to say the tricks this link can do are unique to this tablet and great. Connecting is so easy, you just leave the Bridge app on and the BB Torch 9800 I brdige just has a slow flashing blue light, similar to when you get an email, text, etc. which the default is a red light.

My only complaint is the speed of the Bridge Browser. When you rely on the Bridge as you connection without any WiFi, it runs quite slow and can even be a bit buggy. All the other features work perfectly though.

Although I have to say, I realize why AT&T is concerned, they are afraid no one will pay them to "tether" or "hotspot". We shouldn't have to!!!

The Bridge Browser does run everything the regular PB browser does. It runs FLASH! Its better than the solid for a smartphone browser the Torch runs, thats for damn sure.