The wait for Android and iOS fans has come to an end as Blackberry's popular BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) app is now officially available for the platforms.
On Monday, October 21, BlackBerry made the announcement via its official blog and revealed that initially the app's availability would initially be limited to "millions that took the time to sign up at BBM.com." This reservation system was done to "ensure a smooth roll out" and avoid infrastructure issues, especially since an unofficial build for Android leaked in September.
"This is the news you've been waiting for! I am thrilled to tell you that we are about to officially resume our rollout of BBM for Android and iPhone customers around the globe!* In the next few hours, people will start seeing BBM in Google Play, the App Store and in select Samsung App Stores - where it will be free to download," per the official BlackBerry blog.
Those who did not sign-up may have to wait a tad longer, but Blackberry is "focused on moving millions of customers through the line as fast as possible."
The BBM app for iOS and Android is finally available five months after the company first revealed its plans.
BBM is a popular messaging app that is similar to WhatsApp and iMessage. Users are able to send messages via the Internet by deploying their smartphone's mobile date service. A major benefit of messaging apps is that they enable users to avoid SMS costs as the messaging services are usually free.
However, a major difference between BBM and other messaging apps is that it has a PIN system which helps identify users rather than their phone number or other personal information, making the service anonymous.
BBM for Android and iOS will support group chats, as well as broadcast messages at launch. Users will also be able to send voice notes, photos and other files via the app.
According to BlackBerry, Samsung smartphone owners in Sub-Sahara Africa will be able to download BBM from October 21 itself via the Samsung Apps store. iPhone and other Android users who are located in Africa can download BBM in the course of the next three days.