As you are probably aware, the popular messaging service by BlackBerry called BBM will be coming to Android phones and the Apple iPhone soon. We hear BlackBerry is already beta testing a BBM update to sort out the issue that led to the failed launch late September. But while you wait, you may want to know what BBM (a.k.a BlackBerry Messenger) actually offers.
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Although a lot of consumers reduce the BBM to a text messaging service, it is important to note that the BlackBerry Messenger can be a lot more than text communications. You can share video, photos, voice notes and a lot more. All these features may not be available for all platforms and even when they are there may hardware constraints.
It is also important to note that BBM will only be available for Android 4.0 (Ice Cream Sandwich), Android 4.x (Jelly Bean), and later. BBM will support iOS 6, iOS 7, and later (like the iPhone 7).
Here is what BBM offers as presently on current BlackBerry Phones:
Send and Receive Messages
This is the minimum that BBM will come with. You can send and receive messages instantaneously (a.k.a chat) and be notified when your message is read by the recipient. While you chat on BBM you can share videos, photos as well as share recorded voice notes and the names of songs you are listening to.
You can send text up to 2000 characters and share files up to 6MB.
Each user of the BBM will be provided with a BlackBerry PIN for privacy.
BBM Video Chat
According to BlackBerry, video chat will not be available for Android and the iPhone initially, but will be added in future. Even when available, this is one feature that may not be available for all as it will require a front facing camera and video calling support as well as fast internet on the smart phone. In fact, not all BlackBerry phones can do BBM video conversations today.
With BBM Video chat you can take a conversation from text to video with just a single tap without any disruptions.
BBM Voice Chat
This is another feature that will not be coming to Android phones and the iPhone immediately. BBM Voice allows you make free voice calls to your BBM contacts over Wi-Fi. It is available on all BlackBerry phones running BB 5 OS or newer with BBM 7.
It is not clear whether BBM for Android and iPhone will be coming with the screen share feature which allows users share whats on their screen with their BBM contacts. With Screen Share you can remotely show to your chat-mate your browser view, an open document, or menu options for technical assistance.
BlackBerry is said to be beta testing BBM for Android and iPhone and will probably be releasing it soon. You can signup at BlackBerry website to get informed when BBM is ready for prime time.