BBM

An instant messaging classic goes multi-platform

BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) is an instant messaging application. Originally only available on BlackBerry devices, it's now available in an Android version so that you can communicate between BlackBerry, Android and iOS devices. BBM allows you to send free messages, photos, voice memos, to participate in group conversations and much more. View full description

PROS

  • Multichat
  • Sending files, photos, voice memos
  • BBM groups
  • You control the people who can send you messages

CONS

  • BB 10 interface lacks some flexibility
  • No VoIP
  • Registration takes a little too long

Good
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BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) is an instant messaging application. Originally only available on BlackBerry devices, it's now available in an Android version so that you can communicate between BlackBerry, Android and iOS devices. BBM allows you to send free messages, photos, voice memos, to participate in group conversations and much more.

Stay in touch with loved ones

After getting your PIN code, i.e. your BlackBerry Messenger ID, the application will let you communicate with your friends without restriction.

Blackberry Messenger lets you send messages, voice memos, photos, and files. It also informs you as soon as your messages have been received and read by your contacts. The BBM application is permanently enabled and connected so that you don’t need to open the app to get notifications.

With Blackberry Messenger groups, the messaging app lets you share images, lists, and meetings with members of a group (up to 30 individuals). As for multiple chat, it’s useful to get in touch with multiple friends at the same time, and you can make use of a whole range of emoticons to send in your conversations.

BBM also provides functionality for sending bulk messages. With the option to broadcast messages, you can easily send a message to several BBM contacts simultaneously.

Finally, Blackberry Messenger lets you create your own profile using your avatar (picture or animated GIF) and gives you the ability to post statuses. You can change your profile by clicking on your avatar.

A BlackBerry 10 interface

With Blackberry Messenger, BlackBerry seems to want to provide a similar experience on all platforms. The interface of the application is the same for all versions and imitates the BlackBerry 10 style and codes. On Android, the interface seems slightly out of place; for example, you’ll notice the presence of a "previous" button that duplicates the one offered on the screen of the Nexus or many other Android devices. BBM features are nevertheless easy to access, thanks to a list of tabs at the bottom of the interface.

Good news for Android as well as BlackBerry users

The arrival of Blackberry Messenger is good news for Android users but perhaps even more so for BlackBerry users. If the latter were only able to use the application with those friends who own a BlackBerry, they might not have had many contacts on their BBM list.

As for the application, Blackberry Messenger proves to be quite comprehensive, with a range of good features comparable to those found on competing applications like WhatsApp, LINE, and Viber. It only lacks VoIP and a more flexible interface.

BBM arrives on Gingerbread

The most recent update of BlackBerry Messenger adds support for Android 2.3. At last users of the Gingerbread flavor of Android can chat via BBM on their device. This means that millions of people with lower-end devices will have access. 

Changes

  • Support for Android 2.3.x added

BBM brings you together in the moment with friends and family through instant chats, voice calls, picture sharing, voice notes and more.

Chat with friends on Android, BlackBerry and iPhone:

• BBM is always on and always connected – no app to open
• Know when messages have been delivered (D’s) and read (R’s)
• Say ‘hello’ with BBM Voice – free voice calling between BBM Contacts*
• Quickly share photos, files, documents, voice notes and more
• Allow contacts to view your location live on a map, powered by Glympse*
• See when contacts are responding to your message
• Emoticons for every mood and emotion let you express yourself

With BBM, what you share is yours to control:

• Timed Messages:  Set how long contacts have access to messages and pictures shared in a chat before it disappears from the screen.**
• Message Retraction: ‘Retract’ a message to remove it from your BBM chat.*
• You choose how to share your information - BBM uses PINs instead of phone numbers or email addresses so that it's more private, and you always control who can contact you
• You choose your contacts – 2-way opt-in means you have control over who is able to message you

Chat and Share with many at once:
• Groups – BBM groups help you share pictures, lists, and appointments with group members. You can even be in a group with people who aren't part of your own BBM contact list.
• Multi-person chats – Invite multiple contacts to have a chat together.
• Broadcast messages – Send a message to multiple BBM contacts at one time.

BBM Channels: Join conversations happening now about the things you love.
• Create a new channel to share your thoughts, ideas and passions. 
• Subscribe to an existing BBM channel to join chats with others who share your interests.

Create your own BBM profile:
• Post a profile picture using images, pictures or even animated pictures (GIFs).
• Update your status to let people know what you’re up to or how you feel

Data charges may apply

While these features are designed to remove the message or picture the recipient’s BBM chat view, they do not prevent recipients from capturing an image of the content by taking a screenshot or using an image capture device.  Retracting a message after it has been read by the recipient will remove the message from the BBM chat view, but will not affect copies of the message that the recipient may have made prior to the message being retracted.

*Note features not available on Android smartphones running 2.3.x (Gingerbread)

BBM

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BBM Varies with device