Does An Official BlackBerry OS Update Correct All Problems? RIM Seems To Think So

By Bla1ze on 6 Nov 2009 08:14 am EST
Half Truth

A few days ago we covered a story that was posted on the Inside BlackBerry Blog. RIM had posted that they would be answering questions regarding BlackBerry App World and clearing up some unanswered questions about the application. After some issues with the blog not accepting questions being submitted another post went up yesterday, the second half. In it you'll find some common questions but one specifically may peak everyone's interest.

"Why won't BlackBerry App World work with my leaked OS?"

While I appreciate the power user's need to have the latest and greatest, you are using something that has not been publically released or fully tested, and of course has not been approved for use. You should only use the latest released OS for your BlackBerry smartphone - available from your carrier or at - and we think you'll find that everything will run smoothly on finalized (read: public) product.

A relevant question. But that answer doesn't really sit so well with me and probably not many others out there. It sounds as though running a leaked OS is the cause for all things not working right? can this be? Considering some of the issues we have seen with officially released OS' on devices these days, we as users certainly know what was said is NOT the truth here. We could start off with themes not working (9530), media player bugs, menu system errors (9700) and the list really does go on and that folks, is the truth. Keep reading.

I really hope someone at Inside BlackBerry makes the adjustments needed in that article, sure it may be a reasoning as to why BlackBerry App World may not work but to say an official OS corrects everything is just wrong. Even on official OS' App World is just one item that still has issues. Official OS releases often times have the same bugs in them as the leaked versions we see. Remember, some leaked versions actually do get approved for carrier release. Sure RIM has tons of employees running beta firmware, but maybe RIM needs to hire all of CrackBerry as OS beta testers - our readers and members definitely find every glitch and fast.

I figured we should show some examples of this happening, keep in mind these bugs are all found in official OS releases. While some have been acknowledged and will be corrrected, others remain unmentioned.

9530 OS Theme Bug
9530 Official 5.0 OS Bug In Themes

BlackBerry Bold 9700 System Menu
BlackBerry Bold 9700 System Menu On Official OS.
Two view buttons when opening attachments?

And just to really drive the point home on this mini-rant, let's take a look at what at least one certain (and huge!) BlackBerry carrier thinks about running a leaked OS on your BlackBerry. Below is an email boiler plate that has been forwarded in by Verizon customers to both Kevin and our CrackBerry tip line now on more than a few occassions. The names have been removed. Get ready to laugh:

Good Afternoon __________,

Thank you for contacting Verizon Wireless through our website. My name is ________ and I understand you are looking for additional information regarding the OS update for the Tour since seeing that other carriers have released an update.

I apologize for any delay in providing the update you are anticipating, and can understand wanting the latest and greatest OS to ensure your device is running smoothly as it should.

________, we still have not received any word regarding our official release for an OS update for the Tour and I truly apologize for any inconvenience. I usually check with third party sites such as and phonescoop for information regarding OS releases from our company although there are no guarantees that the information listed will be accurate. They do however; provide information that comes very close to being correct and exact. Crackberry also posts links to unofficial OS updates and user reviews which may assist with determining if the update will work for your device or correct some of the issues you have experienced.

Another option would be to sign up for E mail updates at where you will be notified of upcoming products and services.

We appreciate your business and I thank you for using Verizon Wireless. If you have any additional concerns or questions please reply to this e-mail.

Name of Rep
Verizon Wireless
Customer Service

Pretty interesting huh? It makes sense though. In a competitive marketplace, carriers want their customers to be happy and not be jumping ship. Since official OS releases obviously do not always solve all issues with a device, leaked firmware and sites like play their role in keeping RIM's customer base as happy as they can be.

Topics: News & Rumors

Reader comments

Does An Official BlackBerry OS Update Correct All Problems? RIM Seems To Think So


I talked with a couple different tech support reps at Verizon when I bricked my Tour (with official software mind you) and they told me that OS had been green lighted back on October 20th. They asked me if I had gotten any notification and I said no. They said sometimes it takes a few days before it goes live for everyone. So where is this update? I still haven't seen it. I did get a replacement Tour though since mine was so jacked up after bricking it a few times doing simple things like trying to install app updates. Get this, my Tour bricked twice trying to install yahoo messenger.

You don't want any 4.7.1.xx build. I had the same issue and after bricking both the replacement Tour and the original repeatedly I upgraded to and haven't looked back. Everything works, even Application Center now. Numerous people have had these same issues with various apps (AppWorld, My Verizon, FaceBook, Myspace, yahoo, quick pull, etc.) all very common. I've come to the inescapable conclusion that the 4.7.1.xx series OS's are just unstable.

I have always said leaks come from RIM who want us to test the OS but they call it a Leak so that they don't have to support it. This is just another case of them not wanting to support a leak.

Too bad when using us as beta testers (which I don't mind :D)they don't solve ALL the problems we post here on Crackberry!! Lol.

This VZ Rep was very "brave" and very truthful! Some carriers (Tmobile) wouldn't dare say that... They don't want to be held accountable for any damage to your phone during the upgrade process of a LEAKED OS. On that note, anyone know when TMO will release their 5.0 OS for the 8900? The 9700 is coming out within the next week or two, I'm hoping they do the same as VZ and give us the OS release before the new device is out. (But then again, why would they?)

We hear from readers/members all the time who first learned about CrackBerry from their carrier. This email is just an example.... if I hunt through the old inbox and talk to our customer support team I could dig up literally hundreds of examples. :)

I was in a Verizon store last week, trying to figure out why wi-fi wasn't working on my new Storm2. I mentioned Crackberry to the tech. When the manager came out, he said, "She reads, so she knows what she's talking about!" and he wasn't being sarcastic. LOL.

Big Red loves Crackberry. Thats where they get there news.

CEO of Big Red: "I better check crackberry today and see what I am supposed to be doing"

Customer Service Rep: " Sir, We are hearing a lot about an OS update from callers but we have not been told anything"
CEO: "Have you checked"
CSR: "Crackberry sir?"
CEO: "Yes, They know what we are doing before we do"

To be fair though, RIM is just trying to protect their customers from using any software that may not be working correctly (or at all). If AppWorld doesn't work with your leaked OS then go cry about it but I really don't think its RIM's responsibility to make sure software which was basically stolen works correctly.

You missed the point in the fact that yes, maybe app world would work better on an official OS, doesn't. This is just one example.

For instance, how about why on official OS' does app world deletes it's self after reboot? Why does it archive things I never asked it too? Why when removing an application does it not fully remove it but rather archive it?

Why do themes not work on officially released OS'? Plazmic is not an excuse when they worked fine on previous builds.

Why on a brand new, out of the box, freshly released 9700 are there media player and sytem menu issues present as shown above? This is RIM's new flag ship device.

These, plus a whole slew of other problems are still present on official and leaked OS' and as indicated, often times those "leaked" OS' become offical OS' with all the bugs witnessed by forum members still present.

Why does this stuff still need to happen when the CrackBerry community can rip apart an OS and find each and every bug within a day, yet RIM misses so many even after months of development. I've had leaked OS' on other devices that run better then the official OS that my 9700 was released with.


No I didn't miss the comment didn't address bugs in released software. If there are bugs in released software then sure go ahead and make a fuss, that's not acceptable. I was referring to the article you posted about app world compatibility. While developing software compatibility might break (intentionally or unintentionally), its absolutely reasonable for RIM not to release an update for App World for every single leaked OS where it may not work properly.

The reason the themes are not working is because the theme developers are not using an official 5.0 theme builder. I asked a couple about it when I noticed the nasty white bars.

Not to mention it isn't a hard fix for someone that messes with their phone a little bit.

If you change the settings of the theme to one row, save it, and go back in and set it to what the themes original settings were it will look normal. At least that works on the Storm. I have tried with a few different themes and I like transitions by Z-Man best thus far.

Just a note...

I think if any of these "leaked" OS's were stolen you would here about it. If I owned a BILLION dollar company and an employee I had was stealing software and pirating it.....lets say I would make sure he didn't work at my company again to be nice. It's obvious they unofficially release these OS's for mass beta testing. You can imagin the cost affectivness using and others as beta testers instead of using employees. As Kev. said, we find the problems and we find the FAST!

The problem is that by the time we get them they are a dozen OS builds ahead of that one. I think I read somewhere that they do a new "build" every 3 days or so (most of which obviously never see the light of day).

i asked verizon last month about the verizon update for the tour to 5.x and i was also told that the release was "postponed because of some discovered issues". while i find things a little frustrating in this regard i can put up with the delay to ensure that my phone works the way i would like it to, "reliably". if i get an update an something that worked gets flakey that i would be pissed off. i guess it falls just where do i want to get pissed off at, rim/verizon for something that breaks my phone or verizon for not perhaps breaking my phone. it's all relative i guess but i need my phone and really don't need things bleeding edge if it compromises that.

They could easily release .230 and then do a MR a month or so later fixing whatever they want to fix. That build is very solid and I am sure there are others even newer that are just as solid. It does not have to be perfect, just not have any major bugs.The first 5.0 release isn't expected to be perfect. They need to do more regular MR's rather than make all if us wait for months and months.

I had more problems with the Official on my Storm than any others, so I went back to an 'unofficial' .323. It's more stable, and has given me much less problems. Oh well!

i say operate like windows. give the "leaked" software to people, and have then tell you the issue they are finding with it. sure would seem to help cut costs and issue when "public!"
My buddy is already testing the next microsoft windows (past windows 7).

Yes!!! Open beta development is not only wanted any more, it's reached a point where it is needed, imo.

Bitch and moan, bitch and moan, bitch and moan. Wanna know why your 3rd party app isn't working right with an OS? Ask the developer! RIM is responsible for apps that they make and not for those made by others. Maybe it was coded to spec and maybe it's not. Letting RIM know of the issue is fine. But you must remember that they have a varitable crap load of phones that they have to maintain and your issue may not be that pressing in the grand scheme of things. It is to you but you're only worrying about your device whereas they ha=ve to worry about the entire BlackBerry portfolio. And as for not supporting a leaked OS.... Duh! It's not final code yet and thus not ready for prime time and thus hasn't been realeased. Ipso Facto you're on your own!!

Keep in mind Bla1ze isn't saying here that RIM should support leaked OS's. He's just saying that an official OS DOES NOT fix all problems.  Whenever a post to a leaked os gets made, it's always followed by warnings that it's not supported, if you want carrier/rim support you'll need to downgrade, and there are instructions on doing so.

As for the devices thing... yeah it does make it hard having soo many devices. This is where carriers are actually part of the cause. I bet RIM would love nothing more than to just release mass updates for all devices at once. Instead of each device being on it's own latest version.  But carriers individually give technical acceptance, which fragments everything. If RIM could just push out the updates, it would be much less confusing.  

tour users need as many eyes on this problem as possible no longer works on many if any of our phones. . . There have been a number of posts but no one from, RIM, VZW, Sprint, Google, or even Crackberry has yet to address it. . . . It's worked previously but now the only way to view youtube vids is through a third party app. Which is great but doesn't help when attempting to view vids from other sites (I.e. Facebook or twitter)

What's RIM's stance on that?

They merely said that they THINK it will correct issues you may see from leaked OS's. That is a far cry from actually fixing them. That is also the CORRECT answer you will get from RIM. RIM will NEVER support leaked OS to the PUBLIC. Anybody that thought they would get a direct answer to that question is living in fantasy land.

Bla1ze, you should know when you are getting a corporate correct answer such as this.

It being the corp. correct answer doesn't make it any more right of an answer. Obviously I know the PR lines. The point is that there is other ways around them, such as actually fixing the issues, rather then having to give those types of answers.

If the issues didn't exist such answers would not be required.

From the post text:
Why won't BlackBerry App World work with my leaked OS?"

***You should only use the latest released OS for your BlackBerry smartphone - available from your carrier or at - and we think you'll find that everything will run smoothly on finalized (read: public) product. ***

The word "finalized" in the above statement is total BULL! Has everyone forgotten the quote from the RIM CEO after the Storm 1 was released?

RIM CEO: "Buggy smartphone software is the "new reality"

I love my Storm phone. I would hate to move to something different. But, the above statement is the driving force behind my regular monitoring of the Droid release.

You should never download "leaked" versions! I know most of you are antsy in anticipation,but you should always download the official version!If official versions are buggy,then can you imagine what leaked versions do.RIM stands for Research in Motion,which also means a work in progress.We are all lab mice testing OS and as problems are encountered,they are addressed with a solution.Technology in general is always a work in progress,that's why most electronics only carry 1 year warranties because fail is just around the corner.Bottom line, we are all lab mice testing official versions,always download official versions only and please,try to be patient.

Of course official releases have issues. Name one OS, cell phone or desktop, that doesn't have issues that eventually require a patch.

Of course you shouldn't expect RIM to support a leaked OS. "Leak" is just a sneaky word for "beta". In fact, I am not even sure if it counts as a beta since there is no official way to give feedback.

This is a not a FAIL on RIM's part. This is just reality. Would you expect Microsoft or Apple to support you if you obtained a prerelease version of their OS's?

That is funny. The Storm I own is my first BB. I was told about CB by both the rep at the store as well as the CSR I spoke to at VZW. At first I thought that was rather funny for VZW to be promoting a web site not owned by them.

I agree, it is obvious at this point the "leaks" are not leaked at all but unofficially released for "free" mass beta testing. It is the most cost effective way for RIM to get these tested. Then, since everyone is pushing everyone to CB and sites like it (mainly CB) they are insured that their OS's get tested by their customers.

However, this being the case you would think that they would take the suggestions made here by the CB community as well as fixing certain bugs that are present. But since it does not seem that most of these gett fixed or even adressed, seems to me that RIM/VZW or whoever is missing the ball on their strategy. Why have all this free beta testing (huge advantage for them) and not use it correctly? Are they just careless?

When I bought my first BB, I found it very interesting that when asked where to learn and find all I needed to know about my blackberry 3 VZW rep's immediately recommended

you all should know better that verizon will NOT support leaked OS 5.0 for storm, bold ,and bold2. my advice is wait till it is officil release which will solve huge problems. you know beta usually brings bugs. and it is same with computers. I will not downloaded any leaked OS version period !! why ?? I just wanted to stay out of any problems for my storm.

Keep in mind that 5.0 is officially out for the Storm, and 5.0 comes preloaded on the Storm2. Check your sources before you attack other people for their opinions.

Obviously 5.0 fixed the problems from 4.7 because they're using that on all of their new devices. Leaked operating system versions are only meant for those people that know what they are doing, and not for cry babies that complain that some application doesn't work on it. It is nice to have a log of all issues with an operating system, but not when you're going to complain about it. If you don't like it, go back to your official OS and quit whining.

Wow RIM really knows how to bullshit people huh? I have had more problems with official OSs than leaked ones. 9530 release software? Bold (not AT&T) release software? Nice try RIM.

i worked for tech support for verizon. in training they told us to use crackberry lol. it was easyer to find fixes than looking in there system. i like the leaked os better than the offical

Crackberry nation always has the most complete bug list for blackberry devices. I'm amazed at the speed and thoroughness! What I don't get is if RIM techs ever read the fixes and findings threads posted here (which i would hope they do!) why aren't these problems fixed when things go official? I'm not talking about 3rd party incompatability (although consideration of that would be nice) I'm talking about core OS issues such as memory leaks! Why are they unable to fix memory leaks! Do they really not know how to fix these things or are they just unwilling? Either way it's upsetting to the common consumer (such as my girlfriend who'se seen fit to charge me with the task of keeping her phone running)

RIM has a lot of issues, nearly 9/10 of them stem directly from the OS...the official OS just doesnt work right (hi .65, .75 for Storm) with some apps or it has severe glitches in itself

Most of the people who use leaked OSs have nearly the entire thing figured out in under 3 days (yet it takes a carrier nearly 2 weeks, and still not catch EVERYTHING that had been posted by users) thanks to these forums. Some people definitely arent qualified on here, but when they can catch and reproduce things that RIM has missed in over 100+ builds, id say there might be some people under qualified testing OSes for them...

RIM needs to change their OS structure, plain and simple. We know RIM have their partners test software (read, carriers and whoever else) so they can save money on their end, but this causes a serious issue because not every phone is on the same OS version worldwide (The Storm for example is on all different kinds of builds from Bell/Telus/VZW/Voda). How is one to know what is the culprit for causing issues when there are too many variables?

RIM needs a baseline for their OS. Say you want all storms to roll out 5.0, lets say they put online for download by "prosumers" (they understand the risk of using beta software and is in no way RIM liable) BES managers, and partners. Nothing is left unturned, as long as critical issues like the radio and OS and core apps work, carriers and devs can fix their own apps and feedback from people who are using the phone worldwide is what would make this possible. After substantial testing and announcement is made to developers so they can prepare for it, they can release the build worldwide, and everyone is on the same footing. Now we can turn our attention to developers who have users all on equal footing and its easier to troubleshoot issues.

Why wouldnt you utilize a huge asset like having 1.5 million+ beta testers who fully understand the platform? Hell even Microsoft understood this and now they have Windows 7 and it was all possible by feedback from end users.

Of course everyone knows that all problems are not fixed by an official software release, but when RIM and the carrier release the "official" software, any glitches that are still happening or new ones that may occur are supported by manufacturer's warranty. If you were to go to a carrier reporting defects or glitches in the device, warranty is voided, whether the issue is legitimate or not. While I understand testing out leaked versions and getting a jump on things, if it can potentially make matters worse it's not really worth the risk to me. It's way more cost effective to wait for the official release.

Most of the OS issues referenced by posters are in respect of the early Storm versions last year.

From what I know of these problems almost certainly the Storm 1 OS was released before it was ready in order to meet Verizons demands; and no doubt the missing Wi-fi was due to the same constraints - bearing in mind at the time Verizon didn't support UMA. And of course Verizon wanted the Storm prior to Xmas so they had a decent device to compete with the iPhone.

If you add to the above the fact the carriers also mess with the OS to provide their own branding and controls, and that RIM has relationships with several hundred carriers and produces numerous devices, it's hardly any wonder that this complex map of OS versions occasionally has problems.

OS 5.0 contains a significant feature upgrade from 4.7 and at a guess contains internal stuff to support BES5 and the latest BIS. New OS levels are not released as "bug fixes".

If you use a beta version (as I do) then you take the risk not everything on the device will be perfect (otherwise it wouldn't be a beta release). If RIM is like any other software company then there can actually be multiple versions of an OS in beta at one time. If you get one there's always the chance it's the not the final choice.

Personally, I was happy to use an OS47 beta on my Storm and I was happy that the beta fixed the keyboard issues I experienced. I still have the odd camera problem, but will probably upgrade to a 5 beta rather than wait for my carrier until the end of time.

If there's a problem in the cell phone industry it's pretty well always the carrier at fault. Too easy to make money so they become fat and lazy.