From today BlackBerry Messenger is available for both Android and iOS devices. You can download it from the App Store, the Google Play Store and select Samsung stores.
Actually the release of the app was originally scheduled for last month but delayed due to an early Android app version being leaked prematurely. The company claims that “about 1 million Android users” used this version of BBM with 1 million also “side-loading” it onto iOS devices.
Upon launching the app you notice the first problem. BlackBerry has taken into account a possible wave in initial users and you have to enter an email address to register for the waiting list. Exceptions to this are people who were previously signed up to mobile app info at the BlackBerry website who are excused the initial queue. BlackBerry claims that 6 million people were already signed up for this service.
This is an odd strategy for BlackBerry to take given the need to boost the popularity of BlackBerry products. The waiting list is a popular startup scheme despite being universally hated by users and it seems strange that BlackBerry would risk putting people off immediately. You can find out how the queue is progressing by following BlackBerry on Twitter.
It will be interesting to see how BBM on multi platforms affects the company’s position. High demand for the app is seemingly contradictory of the company’s floundering position within the smartphone market amongst newer devices. But still BBM remains a popular messaging platform especially in countries where older BlackBerry handsets are still widely used.