BlackBerry will soon expand their messenger to Android and iOS. At the BlackBerry Live 2013 event on Tuesday, the company announced plans to expand the popular messenger app to iOS and Android platforms.
The new applications should be available by summertime and will be completely free to download. Thursten Heins, chief executive officer for BlackBerry, explained, “It’s a statement of confidence. We are confident the time is right for BBM to be independent.”
Unfortunately, BBM will only be compatible with the most current versions iOS 6 and Android 4.0.
The Software Product Management and Ecosystem for BlackBerry explained in a press release, “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.”
Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) already has their own similar messaging service called iMessage, and it only works with Apple products like the iPhone, iPad, and Mac computers. Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) doesn’t offer messaging services to competitors like Android or BlackBerry and most likely never will.
BlackBerry Messenger has over 60 million active users a month—51 million of those users access the messenger for at least ninety minutes a day. Moreover, BlackBerry Messenger users send about 10 billion messages per day.
This is probably one of the smartest moves BlackBerry has made in a long time as it shifts the focus from their poorly selling products to a more lucrative service. Although most consumers are over BlackBerry smartphones and tablets, they’re not over the messenger service. It could be this one particular move that changes everything for the company and creates the ultimate turnaround to save the company.