As announced by BlackBerry earlier today, BBM for Android went live in Google Play minutes ago. Initially scheduled to launch last month, the release was canceled at the last moment because of some technical glitches as around one million Android users installed the leaked beta version of the app and flooded BlackBerry servers.
To counter the problems faced last time , BlackBerry is not opening BBM for use at once for all. While all Android users will be able to download BBM right away, they will need to enter their email address to get in the queue to use BlackBerry Messenger and once their turn arrives, the company will inform them. This way, the company will be able to keep out millions of Android users from flooding its servers at once and ruining its second roll-out plans.
BBM will be competing with the likes of Whatsapp, Line, WeChat and several other messaging services available on Android. Despite the huge messaging app crowd, BBM for Android is still expected to rake in big number of downloads in markets like South-east Asia, India and Africa, where BBM is popular.
It also offers a few advantages over its rivals like optional anonymity (users are identified via their PIN numbers and don’t need to share a phone number or email address). It is also more secure and encrypted than its competitors as it uses BlackBerry’s private network.
To remind you, BBM for Android only works with smartphones running Android 4.0 or above. It can be downloaded using the link given at the end of the article.
A look at BlackBerry Messenger for Android features:
Real-time conversations with friends/ contacts on Android, iPhone and BlackBerry smartphones. BBM also lets you know that your message has been delivered and read. In addition, you can see if your friend is responding to the message.
With BBM you can share files on your phone such as photos and voice notes.
Multi-person chats – you invite up to 30 friends to chat together
With Broadcast Message, you can send a message out to all your BBM contacts at once.
Post Updates – BBM lets you post a personal message, profile picture and your current status, and lets your contacts know instantly in Updates.
Note: Samsung Android phone users in sub-Saharan Africa will be able to download BBM for Android from Samsung Apps today, however it will arrive in Google Play three days later. BlackBerry is actually giving Samsung Android phone users three-days exclusivity in the region.