BlackBerry Messenger to Arrive on Android and iOS

In a move that would make many people say, “You should have done this sooner,” BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins has announced that BlackBerry Messenger will soon be available on Android and iOS. Until the global launch this summer, the messaging app has been a BB-exclusive software and arguably one of the reasons why BlackBerry handsets became quite popular in some parts of the world. And while BBM continues to evolve such as the new features introduced in BB10, BBM users see their contact list getting narrower as their friends switch to iPhone and Android smartphones.

Providing Android and iOS versions of BlackBerry Messenger could bring hundreds of millions of potential users, many of them are probably former BBM junkies.

“It is a state of confidence,” Heins says during BlackBerry Live event. “The BB10 platform is so strong and the response has been so good that the time is right for BBM to become an independent mobile messaging platform.”

The messaging app will be available for free on both platforms, with a minimum requirement of iOS 6 or Android Ice Cream Sandwich. Much like its rivals, BBM will be a standalone app. It is not clear whether BlackBerry Messenger app can send and receive messages across platforms.

The iOS and Android versions of BBM will initially have messaging and group features, but Heins has promised that the rest of BBM’s features such as screen sharing, BBM Voice, and BBM Channels, will eventually crawl its way to other platforms.

This move shows that BlackBerry has finally realized that in the battle for mobile supremacy, selling hardware is not just the only way to earn revenue.

Source: TechCrunch

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