Millions of BlackBerry smartphone users have been cut off by a major fault at RIM, the Canadian company that makes the devices.
The glitch, which struck at around 11AM, was affecting online services for consumers all over Europe, the Middle East and Africa. All are served by a RIM data centre in Slough.
They have been unable to browse the web or instant messages, or access other internet services such as email.
A RIM spokesman was not immediately available for comment. Users who are served by a corporate server appeared to be unaffected.
Many BlackBerry users were particularly annoyed at being cut off from BBM, RIM's free instant messaging service. It is a major selling point for its smartphones and makes them popular among teenagers, who are able to save on text messaging costs.
In a later tweet, RIM admitted that "some users in EMEA [Europe, the Middle East and Africa] are experiencing issues".
"We're investigating, and we apologise for any inconvenience," it said.
The outage will pile further woe on RIM, which launched its BlackBerry line in 1999. It is under increasing pressure from more recent entrants to the smartphone market such as Apple and Google.
Its second quarter results last month revealed a bleak picture, with a sharp drop in profits and failure to meet sales targets.
Millions of Blackberry users in Nigeria are currently experiencing Nightmare, for so many it has become a point of contact when it comes to business and the network companies are yet to announce apologise or make any recommendations to their users.