Blackberry outage sparks consumer lawsuits

The massive Blackberry outage earlier this month that left millions without mobile service for days is now the subject of a sweeping lawsuit.

The claim, which is seeking immediate class-action status, is open to every Blackberry owner in the US. A similar lawsuit has been filed in Canada.

In the states, it was brought forward in court in Santa Ana. In it, the suit blasts RIM for not crediting refunds to users for the lost service, saying the company must “take full responsibility” for its failed platform.

The widespread service outage led to a slew of bad publicity for Blackberry, which has been fighting hard enough as it is to keep the brand alive and well in a world dominated by Android and the iPhone.

So as a way to help compensate its remaining loyal user base, RIM said it will offers $100 worth of games and apps as an “expression of appreciation for their patience.”

RIM co-CEO Mike Lazaridis said in a statement, “Our global network supports the communications needs of more than 70 million customers. We truly appreciate and value our relationship with our customers. We’ve worked hard to earn their trust over the past 12 years, and we’re committed to providing the high standard of reliability they expect, today and in the future.”

The outage caused many reports to pop up about customers who decided to switch to one of the more popular smartphone platforms. It was a black time for RIM, but Lazaridis assured, “We are taking immediate and aggressive steps to help prevent something like this from happening again.”

But clearly the story is far from over at this point.