There have been rumors around for a long time that the infamous BlackBerry Messenger, better known as BBM, would be going cross platform and becoming available for iPhone and Android. Dedicated BBM apps for iOS and Android would be making way to their respective app stores starting September 21, according the official BlackBerry blog. The app, which will be available as a free download, will bring the BBM service to both the leading smartphone platforms in its full glory, and carry all the features like BBM Chat, which works similar to iMessage on iPhone. Akin to Apple’s offering, BBM not only lets you remains instantly connected to your contacts on the go, but also features delivered and read notifications, alongside the ability to see when your correspondent is typing a message.
BBM also features group chat, and another neat feature that is known as “Broadcast Message”, which basically lets you send the same message to every contact on your BBM list. It’s neat, and better than what some other similar apps have to offer. The one feature that truly sets BlackBerry Messenger apart from the competition is its PIN system, which allows you to share your unique PIN with other users and connect with them rather than dishing out your phone number or email address. This adds to maintaining privacy when wanting to connect with casual acquaintances, and is really cool to have. The app for Android will become available September 21 at 7 AM EDT, while the iOS counterpart will follow suit at 12:01 AM on September 22.
With powerful cross-platform competitors like WhatsApp and Viber, and then Google Hangouts, its hard to have a reason for downloading yet-another-app for the same purpose. BBM PIN is nice to have and private, but beyond that, it’s really not that big a deal.