updated 07:05 pm EDT, Sat October 10, 2009
T-Mobile warns Sidekick loss permanent
T-Mobile this Saturday has issued a warning to all Sidekick owners that their online data may have been permanently lost by Danger and its parent company Microsoft. In a note to customers, the carrier says the likelihood of recovering contacts, calendars and other information taken offline by a more than week-long outage is "extremely low" due to an assessment of the server failure. Customers may lose all their information if they have to reset their sidekicks or deprive them of power, according to the note.
No explanation has been given for the particular cause of the failure, though a status update is due on Monday. T-Mobile has already promised credit for a month's worth of data service to all active Sidekick owners.
Neither Danger nor Microsoft has provided specific comment on the outage. However, the latest news follows an uncertain but potentially damaging information leak that suggests Microsoft has dramatically scaled back Sidekick support and left both the phones and their online-centered service with little infrastructure to cope with large-scale failures. The Sidekick has long been unique as a messaging phone heavily dependent on its online sync and was one of the first to have its own centralized app store in the Download Catalog, a service which now may not be accessible.
The rumor sources claim that Microsoft cut resources both because of lost employees in the Danger team as well as its desire to transfer users to the Pink project for Microsoft-branded phones.