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RANT! Why Can’t RIM Let Us Delete Our BIS Account?

Anger For years I have had one big issue when I try to sell, buy, donate, or give away a used BlackBerry when I switch carriers. If a person has not updated the BlackBerry associated with their BIS account to a new PIN then your BlackBerry will remain associated to that account and you will have to jump through 100 hoops to get it un-associated. Until then you will keep on getting an error along the lines of  “This device registered with another service provider…” My friend just ran into this issue and he couldn’t believe it when I told him why it was happening.

Let me give you a scenario where this happens:

You purchased a BlackBerry 9000 from AT&T a few years back and then decide to switch to T-Mobile. If you don’t call up AT&T and sit on the phone with them for over an hour to delete your BIS account then your BlackBerry will remain tied to AT&T’s BIS. This will make it impossible to now associate the BlackBerry with T-Mobile’s BIS. Or better yet say you buy a used BlackBerry 9100 from someone in Australia you would be in a world of pain trying to get that BlackBerry disassociated.

Way back when it used to be that you could just login to your old BIS account and just enter in zeros for the PIN and IMEI and it would disassociate the device but that no longer works. As far as I know RIM customer support are currently the only ones that can disassociate a device from a carriers BIS. You would have to call that carrier and drive them nuts until they decide to escalate the issue to RIM to have your device disassociated. I have done this 3 times already and every time it took over an hour.

RIM even admits that you will have to call you carrier to get the device disassociated in the instructions of what to do when you want to sell a BlackBerry. In their words:

If the BlackBerry smartphone was previously associated with a BlackBerry Internet Service account, contact the wireless service provider to remove the association between the BlackBerry Internet Service account and the BlackBerry smartphone.

Would it kill RIM to just add a “Clear association” or better yet a “Delete my BIS account” button?

12 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. What would happen if I log to my BIS account and remove the PIN/IMEI from there? Would that do it?

    I’m using a 8520 now. I’ll update to something by January 2011. Let’s say I give my device to a friend before my new BlackBerry comes. Would going into my BIS and removing the PIN/IMEI disassociate the device?


  2. I work at verizon and I run into this all the time but it only takes a quick call to tech support to remove an account.

  3. what about if I switch from let’s say one t-mobile blackberry to a new one, go on their BIS site and switch the PINS so my new blackberry now works properly, then do a security wipe for the old blackberry and sell it. No one I’ve sold a blackberry to has ever complained about having to call tech support.

  4. This only really happens when you close your account and dont replace the blackberry pin in the BIS settings. Then that old device still has its registration with that BIS account which needs to be removed before you can use it on another account.

  5. I never have this issue!!

    I am on T-Mobile UK (contract) I have a Bold 9700 and use this as my main phone, I also have an Orange UK PAYG Sim card that I use in my Curve 8520. Sometimes I swap them about and never have an issue all I do it login into my BIS and re enter my E-Mail passwords.

    This must be a USA thing coz here in the UK I can swap sims all day long :)

    • Are you using the same BIS account for both devices? The difference is say you had the device on AT&T and then canceled your AT&T contract and wanted to use the device on T-Mobile’s BIS…

      • The OP is said

        “You purchased a BlackBerry 9000 from AT&T a few years back and then decide to switch to T-Mobile. If you don’t call up AT&T and sit on the phone with them for over an hour to delete your BIS account then your BlackBerry will remain tied to AT&T’s BIS.”

        I so in my case T-Mobile UK and Orange UK 2 separate companies and 2 separate BIS accounts but one handset.

        I seem to recall doing this on the same network as well 2 sims same network one handset.

        It must be a feature turned off over there?

  6. On an italian forum they have found out that now, if you insert into a BB a SIM which is not associated to any BIS, after some minutes that BB will be free.

    Try it. :-)

    • Seriously? When did that start happening? I will have him try it. I did notice now that when you switch the SIM it revalidates your email accounts but it just replaced the associated BlackBerry with the new one. There was no way to remove the association from all of your BlackBerrys

  7. With BIS 3.1 does not know, but before you make a change from your device with the device with another account and freed of its user.
    I’m T1 fro Movistar Argentina, i can delete Movistar accounts from webadmin, but not from others carrirs, and prior to that.

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