Millions of people whose BlackBerry smartphones were affected by last week's outages will be compensated with $100 (Rs 5,000) worth of apps from the company's app store.

BlackBerry maker Research in Motion (RIM) said yesterday that affected customers would be able to download the apps from tomorrow, as the embattled company attempts to restore its damaged reputation.

Millions of BlackBerry owners were unable to send e-mails, browse the web or use BlackBerry Messenger last week after a problem at RIM's network centre. Those affected will be able to download the apps from the BlackBerry App World as "an expression of appreciation for their patience" until December 31, RIM said.

Mike Lazaridis, co-chief executive of RIM, said, "We are grateful to our loyal BlackBerry customers for their patience. We have apologised to our customers and we will work tirelessly to restore their confidence. We are taking immediate and aggressive steps to help prevent something like this from happening again."

Rs 5,000
Worth of applications that BB users will be able to download for free