Saudi Arabia stops BlackBerry data service for a few hours; RIM stock drops $2.7 billion

By Adam Zeis on 6 Aug 2010 12:44 pm EDT
CrackBerry RIM Stock

As of today Saudi Arabia had officially blocked data service to all BlackBerry devices, but it seems that after only 4 hours service has been restored. Details are still sketchy at the moment, but earlier today it was noted that users were only able to make and receive calls and not use any BlackBerry data service. Due to these events and facing bans in other countries, RIM stock has lost $2.7 billion in just two days. In addition to the ban in Saudi Arabia, this comes with the heat of facing bans in both the UAE and Indonesia. Stocks sank 4.46 percent this past Wednesday closing at $54.24. Just a few weeks ago the news of the bans didn't seem like they would turn out the way they have thus far. As RIM continues to work toward a solution with the nations involved, only time will tell which way things are headed for the future of BlackBerry.

Source: IBN Live/ Yahoo!

Adam Zeis Adam Zeis "Mobile Nations Content Strategist" 3740 (articles) 2892 (forum posts)

Reader comments

Saudi Arabia stops BlackBerry data service for a few hours; RIM stock drops $2.7 billion


That's the problem with living in a country like that, the people have no say. The government pulls the trigger on whatever they want to do and the people just have to sit by, bend over, and take it. They unfortunately don't have the same liberties that we enjoy daily.

All we can say is fuck these regimes who snoop on their own citizens. You can't even vote them out in an elections. Either they have no elections or its rigged.
So fuck these cheap crap terrorism-supporters and its going to be their loss!

@ BerryGuy25.... These are "Kindgdoms".... Yup... just like midevil Europe...

If the King says, you all need to wake up @ 3 in the morning and take a leak... You do that.... No questions asked....

That's why things over-there can be banned overnight and nobody has the power to do anything.... except his Highness...

Not much of a democratic process going on there....

Oh my, someone stubbed their toe in schlemenkia, hurry, sell, the world is ending...panic!!! We don't need any new products, we NEED a NEW Stock Market. It really gets old hearing you give me a dollar, I'll make you three dollars, I make ten dollars and give you back 33 cents. Get a clue!

the government claims they want to cut off data services from RIM because they have no means of eaves-dropping on the conversations. if they are really that concerned about it, they probably shouldnt have let it be publicly known that they have a blind spot. then work w/ the company to be allow access to those transmissions.

sounds like a bunch of ego-maniacs flexin muscle, letting the public (and RIM) know what happens if they are not pleased.

could be the time to buy, live share price right now? up +0.71% @$52.60

and to add, aapl = -1.07%

so things go up and down all the time

Everyone thier mama are running toward the robot. I ran 2 months ago. My storm is used as a back up music player. RIM should pay attention to last week's poll about BB users planning on leaving BB for Droid. A very high percentage. To simply put it, BB has no life. Even with OS6 I think people will still run. That new Torch is noot enough. Especially when word on the street is that even teh storm 2 might not be able to handle OS6.Been burn too many times.

I don't see why they would block BIS. I'm sure terrorists have other means to communicate. Be that code words or languages not known. Not to mention their own encryption. Although come to think of it, I recall all of those videos leaked with terrorists bragging about their latest victories, they all had blackberries in their hands haha!!! So stupid

Boo.. the link gets chopped.

See, UAE and probably SA don't care about terrorism (or about as much as the US does), but that's how they get the world behind their schemes.

The problem with these countries is the radical religious fanaticism that abounds. These countries want to spy on their population, frightened that the enlightened West is up to their evil ways and are seeking to lure their women to open their eyes.

"Think of the terrorists" is the grown-up version of "think of the children" defense.

The Indonesian government will not block any BlackBerry service in the country. It's just a mere bluff so that RIM would set up its data center in indonesia. Although the rumor spreads like a disease on the news, the communication minister has officially stated that they have no plan of blocking BB service at all.

I live in KSA, and let me tell you that this report is completely false. There are 3 mobile operators in KSA with blackberry services, today early morning one of them made system updates and maintenance. Hence, the BB service was down for some users of this mobile operator. This coincided on the same day as the supposed ban, making people believe it was cut. Other users from the mobile operators experienced no such issues. It was just a routine service upgrade.

I personally called customer service this morning and was told it would be back up and running in a few hours time. They told me the BB would not be suspended as reports had mentioned. BB service was up within the few hours period mentioned by customer service.

People are making such a big deal of this and blaming it on the government or lack there of, and that this is a Kingdom. Please don't make comments on such issues if you have no idea what is going on. Please stop these moronic comments, this was a decision taken for the security of the country and which have been rightfully raised by many other countries across the world. We all know SMS's and phone calls are monitored across the whole world, so this is nothing new.

Always good to get the real perspective. What a difference from what the media and blog sites in North America have posted. Crazy...

Strange that the BBC, Australia, China (yes, China!) and India are reporting it the same way.

North America sure has grown last I checked...

Thank you @berryguy25.

@mykey2k, Yes it is weird honestly. A simple phone call to that mobile operator would have made it clear to them. All BB services are working in KSA right now, and apparently a solution between RIM and the Saudis could be made very soon to solve the issues.

thanks for the info, and i am one of the few who prefer to support the national security of my country rather than insisting on using BIS...

As far as it goes, I think Indonesia's threat is just thin. Indonesia has the largest berry market in SE Asia, and possibly one of the largest in East Asia. Its incredible to see with my own eyes during my many visits there that everyone has a berry.
A ban will cause a real public outcry and chaos. Indonesians will not think twice to cause public unrest all because of a mobile service.
And RIM will also think twice as that market really makes them big bucks.
Let RIM suffer a bit for what they are doing to us local followers not getting love for OS6.
And could be a sign that Torch could be a swansong in an earlier article that RIM could even be up for sale!

if BIS is banned in Indonesia then the millions of people will turn to Android first, and iPhone second. now i am sure that apple has some expectations here ;-D

TBH, RIMM stock has been so volatile in the last year it would take a much larger drop than this for it to mean anything other than another "day"...

Anybody else start to think this was manipulated to get the shares down? I would keep an eye out on who bough or will buy lots of Rim shares when they're down in price.

Anybody else start to think this was manipulated to get the shares down? I would keep an eye out on who bough or will buy lots of Rim shares when they're down in price.

Market capitalization is a rather misleading figure to use. Apple has lost close to $19 billion in market capitalization in less than two months. Is anyone frightened?

All this shows in regards to the Middle East is that many people, and too many analysts, don't seem to understand how encryption works and really don't understand how RIM's NOC works. So many myths around what RIM really does with their servers and so little actual information. And Indonesia has no plans to ban BlackBerry service. The Wall Street Journal has corrected that piece.

If countries cut the service, then multinational companies may be forced to pull their operations out of the countries that cut the service. Who really gets hurt in that scenario?

companies? i thought it was only RIM? hahahaha... anyway, nobody will get hurts. there will always be alternatives as there has always have been.

Many companies rely on blackberries to keep their operations functional. If a company can't communicate effectively with their coworkers in KSA or UAE, then they'll have to make changes. I'm sure there are companies looking to leave already.

I hate places like that, sounds to me that they want to control every move people do, an that's no RITE,

Many of these Islamic radicals are just plain hypocrits anyways. They restrict and keep the people in their countries from engaging in porn and everything else based on some sanctimonious religious grounds while at the same time they jet off to Paris, London or the US with families in tow to engage in shopping, porn, good times with prostitutes and liquor.
IMHO, Islam worshippers are the worse of the lot while behind others back indulging in porn, prostitution and drugs while they condone kidnapping and killing of innocent civilians in the name of becoming martyrs in the name of their sucky religion.

Forget the Middle East ... RIM needs to look at expanding and popularizing their products in Asia. There's a gigantic market over the Pacific. That being said, they've got to step up their game to compete with Samsung and Sony Ericsson.