BBM has been recognized by many users as being one of the most engaging services for BlackBerry customers as it helps them to easily connect while keeping a high level of personal privacy. The service is well-known for its “delivered” and “read” statuses, which allow users to feel in control on the information. Additionally, BBM users are provided with a great level of privacy, being able to control who they add to their contact list, the invites being two-way opt-in.
According to recent a recent announcement made by CEO Thorsten Heins, BBM would be a multi-platform messaging service as the company plans to expand one of its most important characteristics beyond its own smartphone, offering versions of its BBM instant-messaging service on iPhones and Android devices.
Apple already owns a messaging service called iMessage which is used by Apple products customers in order to chat with one another. However, the Apple service is not available on competing platforms like Android.
This announcement appears exactly when cross-platform messaging service and WhatsApp seem to be in the top 20 lists of free apps available for Android, iPhone and BlackBerry. It can be also seen as a shot across the bow of Apple’s iMessages, which has been having connection problems since its launch in October 2011.
The official BBM applications are going to be launched on iOS, and Android this summer, and initially, they seem to be including not only multi-person chats, but also the ability to share photos and voice notes. In addition, new BBM features such as voice, screen sharing and channels are being prepared. It appears that the future BBM Channels will allow individuals and groups to create a dedicated channel in order to share information with followers.
Although allowing other handsets users to access the Blackberry service might be seen as a risk, this move will help the company to maximize the popularity of BBM, a service that already has 60 million users, with more than 51 million people using the service an average of 90 minutes per day. It appears that BBM users send and receive more than 10 billion messages each day.
If Apple and Google approve the service, the BBM app will be available as a free download in the Apple App Store, as well as in the Google Play store. More useful information regarding the system requirements and availability will be announced closer to the release.