US wireless carrier T-Mobile temporarily halted sales of the Sidekick mobile phone Monday after a server failure caused many customers to lose personal data such as contacts and calendar items.
Sidekick models were listed as "temporarily out of stock" on the T-Mobile website following the incident with Sidekick data services provider Danger, a subsidiary of Microsoft.
T-Mobile and Microsoft/Danger apologized to customers for the data loss in a statement over the weekend.
"Regrettably," they said, "personal information stored on your device -- such as contacts, calendar entries, to-do lists or photos -- that is no longer on your Sidekick almost certainly has been lost as a result of a server failure at Microsoft/Danger."
T-Mobile, a subsidiary of Deutsche Telekom, and Microsoft/Danger promised an update on the situation on Monday but said the likelihood of recovering the lost personal information was "extremely low."
Douglas McIntyre, an analyst at 247WallSt.com, said T-Mobile has about one million Sidekick users and the data loss was a disaster for Microsoft, which is facing stiff competition from Nokia's Symbian, Apple, Research in Motion and Google's Android in the market for mobile phone software and services.
"The T-Mobile debacle may be a setback from which the world's largest software maker cannot recover," he said. "T-Mobile has a million nervous customers, all due to Microsoft's failure. That is about as bad as PR gets."
More information: Sidekick's lost data gone for good
(c) 2009 AFP
Explore further: SR Labs research to expose BadUSB next week in Vegas