T-Mobile has announced that it will shut down the servers responsible for maintaining the functionality of the T-Mobile Sidekick series of devices on May 31st. Before then, the carrier has confirmed several methods of exporting the data on the device to a computer or to another phone, with upgrade offers also being proposed for current Sidekick owners.
This also follows the previous confirmation of an Android-powered Sidekick model slated for launch later this year with manufacturing handled by Samsung. Danger itself was founded in 2001 and became successful with the Hiptop device when it was picked up by T-Mobile and rebranded as the Sidekick. The device was known for delivering true push email to consumers and for its heavy focus on messaging before text messaging took hold in the US. Read More for the statement.
"After May 31, 2011, the Danger Service (a subsidiary of Microsoft) used by T-Mobile Sidekick customers for data services will no longer be available on Sidekick devices.T-Mobile will provide offers for our Sidekick customers before May 31, 2011, to help make an easy transition from their existing Sidekick device to a new device. We will have more information to share about these offers with our customers in the weeks ahead.
To ensure the best possible transition for our loyal Sidekick customers, an enhanced Web tool is available on myT-Mobile.com to easily export their personal data, including contacts, photos, calendar, notes, to-do lists, and bookmarks, from the Danger service to a new device, computer, or a designated e-mail account. An application is also available in the Sidekick Catalog to make it easy to export personal data to the Sidekick’s memory card. Many T-Mobile stores can transfer data from that card to a new T-Mobile device if the customer brings in the memory card and Sidekick."
Danger continued to refine and improve the Sidekick over the years, releasing the II, LX, 3 and ID before being purchased by Microsoft in 2008 and absorbing the team into the Entertainment Services division of the software giant, but not before suffering a near disaster with the near loss of the server network that contained all of the user data for the Sidekick and also affected data access in 2009.
Not long after the purchase, the Danger team began work on what was known as â€œProject Pinkâ€ which was a series of phones that was to succeed the Sidekick series and powered by a subset of Windows Phone. Once the project was officially announced as KIN, hopes were high that the devices would become successful. The launch itself proved disastrous for both Microsoft and the Danger team as sales of the KIN One and Kin Two were far below projections, as low as 500 total devices sold and forcing Verizon to severely discount the devices only a month after launch before ultimately discontinuing them, only to revive sales when new data plans were introduced.