With 2009 a memory and 2010 now upon us, I have been seeing a ton of forum posts, tweets and emails from BlackBerry owners wondering when handheld device software version 5.0 will become officially available for their device. While the newest BlackBerry Smartphones to hit the market are shipping with 5.0 (think Storm2, Bold 9700, Curve 8530) and a couple already-on-the-market devices have received the update (VZW Storm 9530), there are still literally millions of devices in the hands of users waiiting to receive some five point oh love. With holidays over, I reached out to RIM for an update on the situation, since our previous 5.0 update pegged it to be out before the end of 2009. Here's the statement:
RIM began rolling out BlackBerry OS 5.0 late last year through our carrier partners for supported devices, including the BlackBerry Bold 9700, BlackBerry Storm and BlackBerry Storm2. We continue to work with our carrier partners to make BlackBerry OS 5.0 available to users on new and other supportable in-market BlackBerry smartphones.
So what's this mean? It comes down to this... RIM held up their end of the bargain per their word. They made OS 5.0 available through their partner portal to their carrier partners prior to the end of 2009. After that, it's really up to the carriers to sign-off (pass technical acceptance) on the updated firmware and push it out their subscribers. The 5.0 software is there.
Going forward, the forum threads and tweets and emails shouldn't say When is RIM going to make OS 5.0 officially available for my device? but rather When is insert carrier name going to make 5.0 available for insert device name? I know. It's not the update you were maybe hoping to hear, but that's where it's at.
Feel free to leave a comment to this post begging your carrier to push out 5.0 for your BlackBerry. It might not help, but certainly won't hurt! And you'll feel better. :)