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BlackBerry brand takes battering, search data suggests

Four of the five search terms containing the word BlackBerry for the week ending 15 October were related to the global outage of the BlackBerry network, according to data from Experian Hitwise.

BlackBerry under fire from customers and analysts

BlackBerry under fire from customers and analysts

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Millions of global BlackBerry subscribers were denied access to the internet, email and BlackBerry Messenger for three days after a switch failure at a data centre in Slough, resulting in a backlash from consumers and analysts.

Overall visits to the BlackBerry website increased by 66% last week as users desperately sought information on the network failure.

RIM was panned for its slow response to the crisis, resulting in RIM founder Mike Lazaradis making a public economy via YouTube.

In total, some 11% of BlackBerry searches made last week were directly associated with the outage.

Research tracking the user journey suggests the situation was made worse because those who searched for BlackBerry later went on to search for Facebook and Twitter, suggesting the PR disaster was spread to social networks.

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM) is attempting to placate each customer by giving them $100 worth of apps from the BlackBerry App World for free.

Experian Hitwise bases its data on search terms it receives from partnerships with UK internet service providers.

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