It's been talked about for a while now: a BBM app for both the iOS and Android platforms soon to be released. More than talked about - it has been dreamed about and wished for by those that love BBM! But, BlackBerry disappoints again...
However, a launch date was never mentioned. Just last week, user guides for both operating systems was leaked which led many to believe the launch was imminent, and that solidified with the landing page appearing on BlackBerry's website for a period of time.
That landing page boasted "BBM for Android and iPhone is Here," but there is one slight problem: it's not. The site featured buttons to direct you to the apps, both leading to nowhere, and many graphics that do the same.
It also featured an FAQ section to help users of the messenger service through typical tasks, and details about its Voice, Video, and screen sharing that will be offered for BBM in the fall for both iPhone and Android.
(That's right, iPhone. It doesn't specifically state iOS, which leads one to believe it won't initially be offered for the iPad.) Soon after being posted, it disappeared from the Internet. Seeing as it wasn't completed yet (and that the apps aren't even available for download), it comes as no surprise.
It isn't just the landing page -- the manuals for both versions of the app were leaked earlier in the week on the BlackBerry Global website. These manuals instructed users how to complete a variety of tasks such as getting around BBM, adding contacts, chatting, viewing a user's profile, joining a BBM group, signing in using your BlackBerry ID, adding emoticons, and much more. The leaking of these manuals is confirmation that the apps are coming soon.
Rumor has it the Android platform will be the first to receive the app (in early August, BBM for Android was leaked on a Samsung Galaxy S3 before its official release), followed by the iPhone version. Initially, BBM was slated to hit the associated app stores prior to summer's end. With all of these leaks, there is still time for this to occur. However, BlackBerry still won't commit to an official release date.
The BBM cross platform announcement was made at BlackBerry World Live 2013, surprising many attendees. In order to use the BBM app for Android or iOS, you'll need to sign into your BlackBerry account, or register for one if you haven't already.
If you think you'll be treated to the full-featured BBM app, you're wrong: some features will only be available to those using BlackBerry devices. The Android version will offer more features than the iOS version due to the platform's openness, according to BlackBerry.
Will BBM for Android and iOS boost BlackBerry's standing in the mobile world? They are hoping so. They feel it is so important, there is talk that some manufacturers will offer it on some handsets right out of the box. It remains to be seen if this is the step that brings BlackBerry back to the forefront of the mobile world.