SMS from Airtel Nigeria:
Dear Customer, effective 3rd Dec 2013 AIRTEL BB Plans will cease to function on non-BB devices or used as a modem. Thank you.
I wondered when this was going to happen. I wondered for how long BlackBerry was going to close their eyes to their servers being taken advantage of by non-BlackBerry users. BlackBerry data plans and the attached lower tariffs are possible because of the compression that takes place on BlackBerry servers. Or so I suppose. At any rate, the use of BlackBerry Internet Service plans on non-BlackBerry devices was never official. If BlackBerry is behind this clampdown, then we can expect that other networks that have allowed non-BlackBerry use of their BIS plans will also implement this.
PS: I am told by a colleague that traffic from non-BlackBerry devices using Airtel’s BIS code isn’t routed through BlackBerry’s servers and that Airtel somehow allowed this arrangement to work for regular data. I am not a network engineer, but it is a possibility. We might as well discuss that too.
The message is clear though: if you want to enjoy the lower tariffs that come with BlackBerry Internet Service, go get a BlackBerry smartphone. If you don’t want a BlackBerry smartphone, subscribe to a regular internet plan. What’s fair is fair.
Let there be wailing! Let there be gnashing of teeth!! Let curses and swear words ring out. Here is an example of the outrage across the land:
— Mysterious. (@EkeneEjeh) November 30, 2013
* Mo jumps on red horse and rides out of town…*