India backs down, gives Blackberry another 60 days

Posted by Mark Raby

Although Blackberry maker Research in Motion faced threats from India of a nationwide service disruption, the country's government has decided to extend its deadline for another 60 days.

India had threatened to systematically shut off some Blackberry services after RIM refused to meet requests to allow government officials to access incoming messages that hit India's airwaves. It is part of the country's national security and a guideline that other mobile providers in the region have been able to accommodate.

However, RIM says that it does not offer "special deals" to countries that would lower its integrity as a secured mobile service network. It also notes that although there are mobile companies that provide the requested access, there are others that don't.

"Singling out and banning" Blackberry instant messages" would be "ineffective and counter-productive," said RIM. It promised to find an amicable solution but would not follow India's blanket request for sweeping access. India seemed to be firm in its demands and said a solution must be in place by tomorrow.

Now, in an about face, the country has given RIM another 60 days. RIM says it will continue to work with government officials to get an appropriate infrastructure in place.