Blackberry has finally revealed the release date of its BBM messaging service that will be available for free download for Android and Apple smartphones, but not for Windows devices.
BBM expands to rivals
The move comes as the Wall Street Journal reports that Blackberry has planned 40% job cuts before 2014.
BlackBerry Messenger has always been one of the main highlights of using a Blackberry device, allowing users to keep in touch with friends through IM, avoiding SMS charges.
Experts said widening the appeal of Blackberry’s flagship messaging service could be a great way for the company to reinvent itself.
From this weekend, BBM will be available for Android devices running Ice Cream Sandwich and Jelly Bean operating systems while iPhones running iOS 6 or iOS 7 can also download it for free.
Multi-platform messaging service
BBM has been labeled as Blackberry’s “crown jewels” and the messaging service hit a chord with a mass consumer audience.
While the move proves to broaden the appeal of BBM, offering it to a wider consumer base will not make any money for the company.
“It could even cost it money,” said Chris Green, a principal technology analyst at Davies Murphy Group Europe.
Blackberry CEO Thorsten Heins revealed the plan in May at the company’s annual conference. At the time, he said the move was a “statement of confidence” and would allow Blackberry Messenger to “become an independent multi-platform messaging solution.”