BlackBerry have just posted that BBM is coming to both Android and iOS this summer. It’ll be available as a free download from the relevant app stores.
Although this is great news for anyone who’d like to keep on touch with their BlackBerry-packing friends, they have left it very late in the game to do. BlackBerry Messenger isn’t the major instant messenger it once was sadly.
No set date has been announced apart from ‘Summer 2013’ so we won’t have long to wait.
BlackBerry and their BBM service was widely known as a fantastic messaging service but has more recently been under pressure due to the success of other cross platform apps such as WhatsApp which works on many different OS types.
Here is the press release
If you’re already a fan of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), we’ve got some exciting news designed to make it easier for you to connect with your entire mobile social network. BlackBerry plans to make BBM, our wildly popular mobile messaging service, available for the first time to iOS® and Android™ users this summer, (subject to approval by Google Play and the Apple App Store, as applicable). This means that, once available, you can welcome your friends and family using these other mobile platforms to connect over BBM and share in the Team BlackBerry love.
As we’ve chronicled on our Inside BlackBerry blog for some time now, BBM set the standard for mobile instant messaging with fast and reliable service and an added layer of engagement with delivered and read statuses. You’ve shared with us your stories about how BBM has kept you connected when it mattered most to you. Upon release of the multi-platform BBM service, you can broaden that real-time connection to friends and colleagues on other supported mobile platforms.
In the first version of multi-platform BBM, iOS and Android users are expected to be able to experience the following BBM features:
- The immediacy of BBM chats
- Multi-person chats
- Voice note sharing
- BlackBerry Groups, where BBM users are able to set up groups of up to 30 people and share calendar, photos, files and more
The team here at BlackBerry has definitely been working hard to bring the much-adored BBM experience to a wider group of mobile users. In a recent press release at BlackBerry Live 2013, Andrew Bocking, Executive Vice President, Software Product Management and Ecosystem, at BlackBerry had this to say:
“For BlackBerry, messaging and collaboration are inseparable from the mobile experience, and the time is definitely right for BBM to become a multi-platform mobile service. BBM has always been one of the most engaging services for BlackBerry customers, enabling them to easily connect while maintaining a valued level of personal privacy. We’re excited to offer iOS and Android users the possibility to join the BBM community.”
BBM Quick Facts:
- More than 60 million monthly active users
- More than 51 million daily active users who are connecting with friends or colleagues an average of one and a half hours every day.
- BBM users send and receive more than 10 billion messages each day, nearly twice as many messages per user per day as compared to other mobile messaging apps
- Almost half of BBM messages are read within 20 seconds of being received; indicating how truly engaged BBM customers are
Today, BlackBerry also announced BBM Channels, a new social engagement platform within BBM that will allow customers to connect with the businesses, brands, celebrities and groups they are passionate about. BlackBerry plans to add support for BBM Channels as well as voice and video chatting for iOS and Android later this year, subject to approval by the Apple App Store and Google Play. If approved by Apple and Google, the BBM app will be available as a free download in the Apple® App StoreSM and Google Play store. Additional details about system requirements and availability will be announced closer to the launch.
That’s some pretty big news, indeed. Be sure to share your thoughts with us in the comments below, who will be the first person from your extended network that you introduce to BBM?