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When is Enough Enough? The BlackBerry 7 “White Screen of Death”

With every up, there is a down.  It is just how life works.  Not everything you love is perfect, and that poses the question of when does one out weigh the other? The issue I seem to be having is JVM errors and White Screen of Deaths! (WSD).

There has been a lot of buzz going around about dead 99xx  devices.  People having them completely bricked when they wake up.  Others are experiencing WSD’s on a re-occurring basis. I have experienced this with different errors and multiple devices which rules out hardware issues.  Me, personally have now had 6 JVM errors between 2 devices in 3 months.  To me, that is uncalled for, and is becoming quite frustrating.  I never thought I would carry 2 devices on me, just to use one as a back up in case one all of a sudden dies, but wish I did last weekend.  That is when JVM 512 pushed me over the edge.

I was on vacation in Boston with my Fiancee and we were having a great time, she decided to leave her 9700 (she wont upgrade after seeing all my issues) at home so she wouldn’t roam and get extra charges. Between the two of us, we really only need one phone.

First night we are there, it WSD’s me, a truly annoying occurrence.  I had my laptop, but not a cable on me.  I calmly went down to the front desk and explained what I needed to the clerk, and she let me go through lost and found, an Android charger was there, and that would suffice.  A hour later, im up and running, had to incur $22 in roaming data charges because it wouldn’t register email over wifi.

I am at my tipping point after last night, 9 days later, its error-ed out again.  My latest back up on my work computer, had to wait until the morning to wipe and reload my OS and restore my info.  I do not want to leave BlackBerry and their works, as I am a loyal FanBoi…. but with these issues keep happening like any other unsatisfied customer I will have to find a solution that works for me.

It saddens me that under the pressure that they are facing to succeed and over come the adversity pounded on them by other platforms and analysts…. they are crumbling.

So it is fair to ask, when is enough ENOUGH?  When can a loyal user be pushed over the limit and forced to go to a device he/she does not want to use, but has to for stability and reliability?

Have you experienced any of these? Come across a lot of frustration with 0s 7 devices? I am really hoping there is some sort of software fix RIM will push out to fix these constant JVM errors.

41 total comments on this postSubmit your comment!
  1. I have not had any problems on any of my OS7 devices. I have trouble believing that many people are really seeing any issues.

  2. I have had none of those problems on my 9900 bold, thankfully! I hear how frustrating such issues can be. My only glitch with my 9900 is that sometimes it seems to lose it’s BT connection to my PB. Initially when I had my 9900 it had little glitches with losing wi-fi protocols and BT protocols but after reprograming that all back in a few times, I’m having lot less issues with it, other then the Bridging issue with my PB which is starting to happen less and less. It’s almost like it finally trained itself to activate that signal right away once I’m back in range with my PB.

    I do know though that I’m still using an old OS on my 9900. My carrier has not sent any of the upgrades out, so my OS is still at and platform I don’t know if that has anything to do with anything…

    • I am also using stock .261
      On os6 and os5 i used to hybrid and fully customize my OS’s and shrink the crap out of them.

      I am scared to do that on my 9900 and my 9810.
      when its lagging and I battery pull, I am often scared that it wont turn back on.

  3. I own a Storm 2 and work for AT&T Business Data Support and haven’t gotten a call yet dealing with WSD or JVM on OS 7 devices yet. I understand that the current OS isn’t as stable as what it could be. However, BBX will change that so there will be no WSD or JVM errors. You just have to be patient anf good things come to those who wait. Please don’t give up on BlackBerry.

    • its very very frustrating. And its not one one device for me either.
      Ive owned the 9860, 9810 and 9900. I still have the 9810 and the 9900 and those are the ones giving me the issues.

      I wont abandon BB until the BBX devices come out, or not.
      They need to fix stuff ASAP.

      • I’m sure as I have heard that they are aware of the issue and are working on a fix for it. I completely understand the frustration and working for AT&T as BlackBerry trained us I could never go to a Apple/Android product. With Apple you would need to spend your entire life savings buying everything through iTunes along with their support, and with Android there is so many things that could go wrong with their OS and contacting Google through some support page doesn’t sound interesting to me.

    • What’s the point though Michael? BBX is not going to run on any of the hardware currently on the street. What, so all of us who bought these unreliable 99xx devices should just be what “too bad for you”? Hope that’s not the underlying attitude of everyone in AT&T support….

      • First, I didn’t say that… Second, my views are my own and not my Employers… Third, RIM is currently working on a fix for the Current models that are having those issues. Fourth, It sounds like you are trying to point me out as a bad person representing AT&T here as which I’m not. Just stating that it will not be this way forever, and just to hang in there through the transition. Thank you.

  4. Hi Ricky,

    Sorry to hear about your issues but I just have a small problem with the perception your commentary gives. These issue seem to get more flame than most other platform and while I have had my fair issues in the past with my BlackBerry, I have had no such issue with my 9900. Like you said in your intro though stuff happens and I think the commentary is more of you venting your frustration rather than actually grading the overall product.

    I think these so call bad 9900 make up a small percentage of the base, as noted by most of the comments towards your commentary. My sister who moved from a iphone to 9810 hasn’t reported any issues to me since. I have no doubt some customers have issues but again my problem is why do a few BlackBerry issues get accepted as the experience for the broader BlackBerry base.

    Iphone has been struggling with battery issues and still has not been able to fix it…….but most of us accept that his is a small minority and does not reflect the broader experience of the user base. Android has issue with higher volume problems and constant malware……again we accept this only affects a small percent of users so we move on. But anything related to RIM regardless how small it is seems to be taken as a reflection of the whole base rather than understanding this is affects a small number of customer. It technology and again stuff does happens.

    Again Ricky, I understand your frustration and you rightfully should be…….I guess my problem is these stories do not reflect the entire base experience and only affects a small portion. Should RIM fix it? Absolutely but I image there is an Iphone or Android user who feels the same way as you regarding their respective problems. No business wants any user to be frustrated and for this reason your problem should be of concern to RIM…….at the same time your particular issue is affects only a small percent of the users base and should not be interpreted as the experience of the entire BlackBerry 9900 base.

    Saying all that I hope RIM is able to push some updates and hopefully you can have your phone back to normal because any frustrated BB user is never a good thing. Its too bad they these no BBX yet cause these update would have been pushed already.

    All the best Ricky.

    • thanks for the support an understanding.
      This article was done more of a rant, and it is my one sided frustration on my personal woes.

      I will keep my 9900 until the London.
      In fact I already have my money put aside for it.

      If it were once or twice and with updates, I wouldn’t be bothered.
      but a total of 6 times now, make me want to GGRRRRRRR

  5. I just recently experiences the famous white screen of death (JVM error 517) on my new bold 9900. I can honestly say that it drove me nuts, but I’m a die hard blackberry fan. So i hours laters and tremendous frustration i was able reload the OS and get everything working at it should. Of course I failed to backup to backup the device initially and you can imagine how i sufferered upon seeing zero contacts. Thankfully I had done a done a backup on my previous device and was able to recover the majority of the data lost. But I has high hopes for this device and i’m not enjoying it as much as my 9780 software wise.

  6. This is why I left blackberry for the iPhone 4s. I’m tired of all of the excuses they give. In my eyes Blackberry is the next Palm. Their qnx phone won’t do good either. Hellooooooooo Apple!

    • Have fun with your iPhone 4s, I heard their having their own issues, which wasn’t fixed even with an upgraded OS.

    • I tried the iphone 4, 3 times,each time i couldn’t get used to it

      the lack of business/productivity on the device did not work for me.
      Also the lack of multitasking was non existent.

      It has its place, but not in the business world.

      • Ricky,

        I don’t want you to listen to those Apple Anthropological people that really don’t know what to do with life besides annoy others. People are going to get bored with regardless of what phone they have and soon be back to BlackBerry. Just a simple fact. I’m a straight shooter and going to give you facts, and show you a Demonstration with what OS with go further in 5 Years.

        If you didn’t know QNX powers MyLink for Chevrolet with this upcoming 2013 Malibu:

        As you might know through Devcon, RIM is really going to immerse itself further into things that really matter with it’s cloud services. No other OS could possibly do OTA updates without a reboot and have that sense of Stability and Reliability.

        There are many things that are coming, and as I have stated before bored people with Jump Apple’s Ship, cause it won’t take long for RIM to incorporate a SIRI like feature into your car that syncs various things with your phone via the Cloud beyond other Devices.

        Who Knows the Native Tools are powerful enough to win some devs, and RIM could really get cooking with a Mac-Book Pro Killer when BBX is Prime Time.

        • i know mostly what you just posted from a lot of reading myself.

          I find myself trying other devices, not to switch because BB has what I need. But to see how the actual competition pairs up. Ive also had a few android phones, and that is a platform that needs work, and people THRIVE to it.

        • Dude you are a dreamer. BB is going downhill. I really doubt they could figure on how to create something like Siri, which I don’t use. BB can’t even get there natice email client stuff inorder. I’ve been a diehard BB fan for years but I got a slap in the face when BB brought us this OS 7 line up. Sales have dropped on BB, look it up on BGR. But you wont admit it. The playbook was a waste of time and money spent. That is one reason why BB will end up like Palm. Countries other than the US survive on BB. Those countries are more popular with BB. People here in states are tired of being played and given excuse after excuse. Come on, they wont even take responsibilty of the outage but yet they give free games out to comp us. Really? Free games… Anyways when it comes to BB you are just racist to other phones doing better.

          • I’m a dreamer huh? Then I guess I’m dreaming big! I know Architecture, and Apple won’t cut it. You see how RIM’s current portfolio is with OS 7, but what happens when IOS reaches it’s end like OS 7. It will be a lot worse off. You’ll see in due time! P.S. A lot of the time BGR is full of B.S.

          • Your comment is summed up by your reference to BGR, the Apple Inquirer of tech….

            • Yeah… What ever happened to that iPhone 5 with the holographic screen that everybody thought we were going to see but instead came the iPhone 4S? Didn’t BGR start that? People really think that Apple is going to be ahead when RIM releases the BBX Platform… Really? I don’t think so, Apple’s OS is limited. Just imagine how long it would take to update one of those “Magical” Intergalactic Space iPhones on a WIFI connection, let alone connected with iTunes! Like Years! Unlike BBX where you can update bits and pieces of the OS without a reboot. The American Investors/Analysts have really gotten stupid over the years. I would like to blame it on fast food, or the Government but honestly I think it’s the smoke planted in the air from “Apple’s burning building of Bullshit”

  7. I’ve had a Bold 9900 since August, I’ve loaded just about every update thats been available on the web currently on for a week. No problems, no issues, works wonderfully.

    Every os update has reduced the memory and increased the battery.

    I’ve even loaded every COD that was not available for OS7 from my old Bold 9700. Some did not work and even crashed the 9900 but were easily removed no harm done. One even worked fine but thought it was a torch and would run in protrait mode so I had to turn my phone on the side to configure, but since it was a sync app that ran in the background all the time, it was no problem.

    Love my Bold 9900

  8. I love Blacckberry so much I’m, as I sit here tonight, I’m doing about my 20th (YES – 20th) reinstall. JVM 507, 517, and some others I don’t even remember. I don’t mind the OS reinstall. It’ss all the passwords and program idiosynchrosies I have that take forever to manuallly put bank in. I know how to back upt the 3rd party apps. Has anyone ever figured out how to back them up w/ all the passwords, users ID’s, zip codes etc in the backup..
    I’m on a .347 hybrid now and have tried every OS I can find. I am a power user but that’s why I wanted the Bold so badly and LOVE it when it works. 517 is supposed to be hardware/software conflict. No idea how to get to the bottom of that or what program is causing it.

  9. Hi everybody!! I want to start by saying and Crackberry to the CORD,I have personally had to upload the OS three time in pass two months on my 9930 with Sprint!!! The first time my “compas” just when missing then while updating an App it starting laging till the “WSD” showed up with code “App dess 202 or 220” and would not turn off,this last week again when rebooting it just stop two thirds of the way waited about 1/2 hour!!!!!! Than just did the old battery pull and when it came back it was useless but this time I was able to make call…… :/
    By the way this my second one the first got VERY HOTTTT and you could see light bleeding thru the side usb port!!!!!
    When I was using my 8330 I never had this issues and I must of rebooted that baby about a hundred times over the two years!!!!!! Please RIM get your S#*@ together this really SUCKS!!!!!!!
    One of your loyal customers.

  10. I have the 9810. Since getting it in late August, it’s been nothing but a pain. I use ATT and have had the most dropped calls in my 10 years with the company using this device. I never even had a dropped call until I got a Blackberry 4 years ago. My location/travel hasn’t changed, and my calling is even less as I can’t stand the crappy walkie-talkie style call quality. I blame this device because I use OnStar which has significantly more power than a smartphone for calls, and it’s like talking with a landline. I have engineers telling me this is expected due to the FCC and brain cancer risk, and phone manuf having to reduce the trnasmission of “phones”. There has to be a work-around to this though. Europes mobile phone call quality is FAR superior.

    Now to OS7. It has been sluggish since day 1. Crashed a week after owning, and I told ATT reps and they said it’s common JVM error if u look in forums. I said dont care! This oi a NEW device. Promised by RIM to be the godsend. The device we have to upgrade to until QNX. Well they lied, it’s a joke. This solved oone problem and created another. And so will QNX. I checked daily for OS7 phone release dates since the beginning of 2011. This was not worth my wait in any way shape or form.

    Business phones? How do u complete business with a constantly crashing phone, or one which still displays the spinning clock?? It freezes in a call and I can’t hang up! Sending an email freezes it up. Business my ***.

    I loved BB but they are 5 years behind right now. It took OS7 to get “Add to Exisiting Contact” functionality.

    Until they get it together I can’t wait. My life keeps moving, 24/7, b/c these devices were created for that in the first place. You snooze you lose. No one should pay for 2007 tech in 2011. Even typing this on my BB is he’ll b/c it’s sluggish like Windows 95.

    IPhone user come December 21. I can have my life back, and not have it be dictated by this slow/frozen handheld computer.

    • To be Frank, The current form of BlackBerry OS wasn’t even suppose to make it this far. Messaging is pretty much where it should have been left at. As far as QNX goes, just because you may be experiencing some difficult times with RIM. They will prevail in the end, and as much as many people know with Apple, they were in a tighter spot that RIM back in 1997. Nobody just can assume that they won’t make it through. With QNX, they have a ecosystem, it’s a pretty small one, but they have one, and it’s better than their current. I guess all I can say is that it will take time, and you will see.

      • To Mike S***

        I bet you have a poster of Jim Balsillie & Mike Lazaridis on your bedroom wall. And there is no telling what you do with it. Your QNX rumor wont even support BBM or BIS with that crap phone comes out. If it even comes out, which it was supposed to be out the first of 2012 but yet you are looking for 3Q 2012. Again, they can’t get there crap together to sync all of it together to make it run smooth. The picture of the QNX phone looking like a playbook, looks like s***. Why is RIM giving those playbooks away. BECAUSE THEY CAN’T F’N SELL THEM! Again I was a diehard BB addict but get with reality. Just some stupid specs of which no one knows about this QNX. Oh btw, your buddy Kevin at Crackberry (and yes BGR) also said sales are down. I’m tired of arguing with a dreamer ya douche.

        • Wow… A little immature aren’t we? I see you can’t come to the table with anything but name calling, etc… Let me ask you a question or two.

          How many Certifications does IOS have? I can give you a website to show you how many QNX has:
          Where’s Apple’s?

          Now you also say that QNX can’t run with RIM’s Infrastructure, I beg to differ:

          Have you ever thought of maybe they are integrating Gist, and the acquisitions into it? Also, have you ever thought that sales would increase when Native Email is integrated into the Blackberry Playbook?

          How much are carriers making off of Apple/Android??? You tell me… Cause it isn’t much! BlackBerry actually pays the carriers a percentage for Apps bought in App world, which you can’t say about any other Manufacturer. What carriers are going to promote Apple/Android in 2012 when BBX is out and pays that percentage of Apps to the carrier? You tell me…

          Obviously, you’re a pest that knows little about anything, which is fine with me. Your Loss, and I have pity for you!

          P.S. The Poster of Jim and Mike? I wish I would of thought about that, and there is nothing you can say that could possibly make me mad. You obviously don’t know me and my level of high level of expertise.

          I’ll let you live in your “distorted reality” of Apple, and when Apple can’t help you; that will be just to bad.

          I also guarantee your not using your real email address, cause if you did; it wouldn’t have taken over 24 hours to respond. Either that or your iPhone is delayed that long in which case I wouldn’t be surprised.

        • There is a reason that BBX is not released until Q2 and it has nothing to do with software. Before you make accusations, please do your research. And it is Q2 NOT Q3 as you’re writing.

          The hardware tech has to catch up with what they’re putting into the BBX Phone:

          The gating issue is Qualcomm’s latest LTE modems, which won’t be available until Q2. RIM is using TI’s OMAP4 4460 app processor (dual core 1.5GHz, same as in Galaxy Nexus), which is absolute leading edge silicon. But since this phone will be LTE, RIM needs to wait on Qualcomm to ship its 28nm LTE baseband chips (the modem). Getting a 28nm baseband is the key for LTE because it will be the first time that it will meet RIM’s power/battery and size requirements, because it integrates LTE data and 3G voice on the same chip.

          All of the LTE phones you see in the US market use 2 separate chips to get these functions done, which is why they are huge and burn battery like crazy. RIM is just not willing to make these design & performance trade-offs, and I think they will be better off for it.

          By the way your beloved iPhone 4S isn’t even close in hardware specs and perhaps by the time iPhone 5 comes out next year same time (after BBX) it’ll finally be LTE compliant as well.

          As for BBX not supporting BES and BIS, you are a few copies behind on your BGR. The new BBX phones do support it, again you need to go to better news sources.

          The current iPhone 4S with Siri and iMessage is only catching up with BBM and Vlingo which has already been out for Rim years ago.

          As for PBs being on sale, there’s nothing wrong with kicking up the momentum before the Christmas rush. At least they’re not like iPads, overpriced for a whole lot of nothing.

          My wi-fi playbook is faster then my boss’s iPad and my 9900 gets messages faster then any of my collegues iPhone 4S’s. That’s the difference with push email rather the “pull” email masquerading as “push” emails.

          My 9900 and PB bridges perfectly together as did my previous 9800 so not sure where you get the idea that they don’t sync together.

          Also BBs never needed an app to run Gmail like an Android or an iPhone. Just think, there actually is a phone that works without an “app for that”, what a concept, huh???

          Regardless, people have a right to use and defend the phones they love and while you may not agree you still need to respect that especially coming onto a Blackberry page. I don’t see anywhere on this page that it’s Apple lovefest… I don’t see an alter of Steve Jobs up…

  11. I too am on my 3rd 9930. but i managed to get the last one back to life. I think its an OS issue. After installing my phone works just great. My first 2 got the white screen of death 1 week appart running the same software version higher than what I have now. I was running Verizons latest build on them

  12. I have the same problems. Frustrating is that this error happening on the road… at a moment you can’t repair the OS. You have to complete wipe the phone. No backups possible. And then reinstall all programs.
    That takes me 3 to 5 hours before i am back on line.

    Lucky i found a way with master control program to backup also all my third party programs so i can upload in one shot the operating system and OS.

    I hope soon RIM solve this problem..!

  13. Just adding to my earlier comment,at least it seems that everybody is able to reload their on OS back then self,I on the other had was only able to do it my self the first when my “Compass” when missing, the last two times my 9930 would not connect to my DT no matter what I try!!!!!! So I end up at local Sprint Service center for while, 🙁
    Is anybody getting a small white sandclock symbol in the middle of the black screen right after it reboots????? Ones I see this I know it could be trouble!!!!!!! either it comes back or it does not………

  14. I have a 9900 unlocked from Rogers, and it still running the stock version of the OS. Not a single glitch so far.
    What you should do is get them to replace your phone immediately and test the hell out of it until all is clear, and possibly, for now, avoid using the charging pod overnight.
    I was thinking, this phone charges in less than an hour, why would you leave it plugged all night? I plug mine in the morning before getting ready for work. Once I’m ready I just take it and it’s fully charged. =)

    • I have had my issues with multiple devices.
      I do not have my phone charging at night, but i charge it briefly at work when needed.

      I do run the h3ll out of my phones, 6 email addresses almost 30 apps. A lot of multi tasking and pushing it to its limits.

      • Can it be one or a few of your apps causing this hang up? I run very little apps, but I can’t help thinking that there might be a syncing issue with some of the apps… just a thought…

        I get 100 emails a day on 2 email addresses, of which I have to respond to 90% of them, plus I put through roughly 800+ minutes a month on 9900 as well it’s always bridged to my PB, so my phone gets a lot of usage as well. The only difference I can think off that could cause this glitch is that there might be app issues.

  15. I have gone past 25 white screens of death on my Bold 9900 and have now given up keeping count. I have even seen the hourglass on the white screen, but found she will always recover from that one.

    I don’t believe there is a hardware issue at all.

    I now run a parallel Bold 9780 as a backup / just in case of emergency. I also leave an OS installed on my laptop ready to go, and always carry a USB cable. I guess sort of lucky, sort of not, I am on BES which means everything is backed up, but getting a BES BlackBerry restored can take longer than a BIS one.

    Will I leave using a BlackBerry, no. Is it frustrating, yes. What can I do about it, apart from the above: not much. I do however make it a point of reloading OS weekly, and that seems to help (maybe if only in my head).

    Anyway, I am sure RIM will get it right & look forward to that.


  16. Couple days ago I have it problem of when I try to use it call there’s no dial tone,so I call it my subscriber which is Telus(Canada) and tech lady she told me she’s gonna troubleshoot my bold 9900 and after while she ask me to put it bac battery,when I put it back I got message of JVM 517 error so when I told her she told me nobody cannot fix it and its somthing about software so I have to go to the one of Telus store and tell them the problem I have to they can send it fix it I was so mad and frustrate so what I did it I get it my laptop and and try to re-downloaded new os7 while I did it I took it out battery so I wipe it out and re-downloaded new os application and I send her email to tell her now my b9900 is working so she told me I’m still have it problem so I need it send it my bold 9900 to fix it which I don’t no if rim fix it up JVM517.

  17. blackberrys sucks balls.

  18. I’ve had many BB’s over the years and friends of mine have had issues with BB OS’s and I have fixed them all. Installing lame 3rd party apps is the BIG problem and removing them. Don’t add apps you don’t need only to remove them. Be sure to read all the reviews on apps BEFORE you install and make sure you are going to use it often. Backup your BB when you get it. Then later if you have problems you can always revert. I wipe my OS and reinstall it to new install state often because I install and try lots of apps. I have ran OS 5, 6 and now 7 with no issues of a system lock up to white screen using the above method. Another problem my friends run into is upgrading without removing the old OS. Always wipe the OS first and install the new. ALL WAYS BACK UP FIRST! Here are some software titles that will help you shrink your OS and WIPE the OS. BBSAK (Blackberry Swiss Army Knife),BBH Tools (Blackberry Hybrid Tools) & BB OS Tool. Before you attempt to use these tools read all you can about their use. Learn your OS system by reading Blackberry Forums. The more the better. It’s really simple once you understand how all the .cod files build a OS and what they do. Some can be removed others cannot because they are OS dependent. If you have no idea what a .cod file does research it by its name on Google. BEST THING TO REMEMBER: “If it’s not broke don’t fix it” Stay away from Hybrid OS’s as they are only as good as the person that custom built it. Use released OS’s by service providers only! Then only after it has been out for 8 months to a year to see there are any issues with users over it. Like HERE one persons issue does not make a problem. If several people have the same problem then it could be but still not truth. It takes time to get a stable OS from RIM because of all the models and SERVICE PROVIDERS that demand a OS for them only. It’s a wonder RIM does as good of job as they do. It has to be a real headache to make everyone happy. Try it yourself sometime. I have had many models and ran many RIM OS’s and they are all excellent if you use common sense. If you have a good working BB OS’s and your happy with it then keep it. Updating OS’s is not always necessary as the newest is not always the best. No other OS is as configurable as Blackberry and packs as much power. Bar none!

    BB 9810 OS7 Bundle 2404 v7.0.0.583 Platform

    Blackberry RULE!

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