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BlackBerry Messenger

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BlackBerry Messenger

BlackBerry Messenger (BBM)
Developer(s) BlackBerry Ltd.
Initial release 2005
Stable release

10.5.5.38 (BlackBerry 10) (31 October 2014 (2014-10-31))

8.5.1.8 (BlackBerry) (3 August 2014 (2014-08-03))

2.5.0.36 (Android) (10 November 2014 (2014-11-10))

2.5.0.26 (iOS) (31 October 2014 (2014-10-31))
Development status Active
Operating system BlackBerry OS 5 and later
BlackBerry Tablet OS 1 and later
iOS 6 and later
Android 2.3 only and 4.0 or later
Windows Phone 8.0 and later
Platform BlackBerry
iOS
Android
Windows Phone
Available in Multilingual
Type Instant Messaging Client
License Proprietary
Website .com.bbmwww

BlackBerry Messenger, also known as BBM, is a proprietary Internet-based instant messenger and videotelephony application included on BlackBerry devices that allows messaging and voice calls between BlackBerry, iOS, Windows Phone and Android users. It is developed by the manufacturer of the BlackBerry, BlackBerry Limited (formerly known as Research In Motion Limited (RIM)) and was first released in August 2005.[1]

Messages sent via BlackBerry Messenger are sent over the Internet and use the BlackBerry PIN system. Many service providers allow sign-in to BlackBerry Messenger using a dedicated BlackBerry data plan.[2] Exchanging messages is possible to a single person or via dedicated discussion or chat groups, which allow multiple BlackBerry devices to communicate in a single session. In addition to offering text-based instant messages, BlackBerry Messenger also allows users to send pictures, voicenotes (audio recordings), files (up to 6 MB), location on a map, stickers and a wide selection of emoticons.

Communication was only possible between BlackBerry devices until late 2013 when BBM was released on iOS and Android systems. 300 million Stickers have been shared. Daily, 150,000 BBM Voice Calls are placed. There are more than 190 million BBM users worldwide as of 2015,[3] and BlackBerry infrastructure handled 30 petabytes of data traffic each month by early 2013.[4] BBM was very popular in the late 2000s and the break of the decade, before it started to lose out to cross-platform rivals.[5]

History

BlackBerry Messenger was launched on August 1, 2005.

With the release of BlackBerry Messenger 5.0, BlackBerry allows users to use a QR Code to add each other to their respective friends lists rather than using only numeric PIN identification or an email address associated with the user's BlackBerry. Recent BlackBerry devices can also exchange BBM contacts using Near Field Communication technology. Users can also set animated gif pictures as their display pictures,[6][7] although animated pictures have a 32KB size limit.[8][9] To design animated GIFs for BBM you'll need graphic design suites like Adobe PhotoShop or a simpler suite like FlashDP.

The release of BlackBerry Messenger 6.0 introduced additional traits. This update is focused on social communication mediums, including 'BBM Connected Apps', which allow the user to invite friends to share their favourite BlackBerry Applications.

With the release of BlackBerry Messenger 7.0 in December 2012, voice chat was introduced. The new feature is called BBM Voice Call.

Reliability

BlackBerry Messenger is widely reputed for its uptime and reliability.[10][11] However, from October 10 – 12, 2011, those using the service within North America, Europe, the Middle-East and Africa were widely affected by an outage at provider RIM's UK headquarters in Slough, Berkshire. BlackBerry Messenger was reported to be unavailable, seriously affecting the company's reputation.[12][13]

Features

  • Make BBM Video calls or Screen Share over Wi-Fi or the mobile network on the latest smartphones (only BlackBerry 10).
  • Send and receive messages with unlimited length.
  • Choose a personal BBM display picture and status.
  • Real-time confirmations when messages are being written, delivered and read.
  • Share photos, videos and more with multiple contacts at once.
  • Add contacts by scanning QR Codes, using NFC technology or sharing PINs.
  • Send files such as documents, photos, music, videos up to 16MB.
  • Create and join groups where you can share and discuss lists, photos etc.
  • Share location.
  • Create, likes or comment BBM Channels.
  • Free Call BBM contacts over Wi-Fi (only BlackBerry OS).
  • Voice Call BBM contacts over Wi-Fi and mobile data [BBM app Android]
  • Retract send messages (in app purchase)
  • Send messages and pictures with a time viewing limit (in app purchase)
  • Send stickers (in app purchases)

Trademark conflict with BBM Canada

In late December 2011, the broadcast ratings provider BBM Canada (which has maintained the BBM trademark in Canada since 1944) asked Research in Motion to cease using the BBM initialisation to describe the BlackBerry Messenger service, or finance the cost for BBM Canada to change their branding in exchange for the use of the BBM initialisation, or face further legal action.[14] The suit was dismissed in 2012 by Canadian federal courts as being without merit,[15] and BlackBerry uses the terms "BBM" and "BlackBerry Messenger" equivalently and interchangeably, as seen in the company's official website for the service.[16]

Cross-platform

BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins announced on May 14, 2013, that BlackBerry Messenger will be available on iOS and Android in the Summer of 2013.[17] This will mark the first steps of Blackberry Messenger reaching beyond its own platform, as it has never been available on competing hardware before.

It was rumoured that BlackBerry Messenger would launch on June 27, 2013 for Android and iOS.[18] This was later denied by BlackBerry and an actual release date was yet to be announced.[19]

On June 21, 2013, A BlackBerry Messenger application was spotted on the Play Store. However, it turned out to be a fake.[20]

A World Wide release for BBM on Android was slated for September 21, 2013, which was officially announced by Blackberry, it was also announced that it would work on Android devices running 4.x.x (Ice Cream Sandwich & above)[21]

BlackBerry confirmed that BBM for iPhone would release on September 22, a day later after the official Android release and would work on iPhones running iOS 6 & later.[22] However, during the worldwide rollout of BBM for Android and iPhone on September 21, 2013, 1.1 million Android users downloaded a leaked BlackBerry Messenger APK which caused BlackBerry to cease the launching of BlackBerry Messenger on both Android and iOS platforms.[23]

BBM was officially released on iOS and Android on 21 October 2013. 5 million downloads were recorded in the first 8 hours of its release. BBM, in late 2013, was the No. 1 free app in both the Apple App Store and the Google Play Store.[24] In total, the app had over 10 million downloads on the first day.[25]

On 24 February 2014, BlackBerry officially confirmed BBM for Windows Phone and Nokia X would be released by Q2 2014. Nokia confirmed BBM would be preinstalled on Nokia X devices.[26]

Non-BlackBerry features

For now BBM for Multi-Platform will offer Personal Chats, Group Chat up to 30 people, Status Updates and can send or receive messages up to 2000 Characters. BlackBerry plans to integrate BBM Channels, BBM Voice and BBM Video to its application on Android and iPhones towards the end of 2013.[27]

In early January 2014, A beta update for BBM on Android was released to testers. The update includes BBM Voice & BBM Channels.[28] In February 2014, a update (2.0.0.13) was officially released to Android and iOS users containing the awaited features along with some other features including new emotions and changes including a new look for Updates featuring choices to show All, Contacts or Channels filters.

Security

On November 4, 2014, BlackBerry Messenger scored 1 out of 7 points on the Electronic Frontier Foundation's secure messaging scorecard. It lost points because communications are not encrypted with a key the provider doesn't have access to (i.e. communications are not end-to-end encrypted), users can't verify contacts' identities, past messages are not secure if the encryption keys are stolen (i.e. the app does not provide forward secrecy), the code is not open to independent review (i.e. the code is not open source), the security design is not properly documented, and there has not been a recent independent code audit.[29][30]

The enterprise version, BBM Protected, initially scored 3 out of 7 points, but this was updated to 5 out of 7 points after additional information was provided by BlackBerry and reflected in the EFF changelog dated November 14, 2014. It lost points because past messages are not secure if the encryption keys are stolen and the code is not open to independent review.[29][30]

Version History

BlackBerry OS

BlackBerry Messenger 1.0

  • date release: August 1, 2005

BlackBerry Messenger 7

  • date release: March 11, 2010
  • A new selection of emoticons is integrated
  • Allows user to Free Call over WiFi

BlackBerry Messenger 8

  • date release: November 26, 2013
  • BBM Channels
  • All new design interface
  • Enhanced BBM Updates
  • Performance enhancements
Version Released Notes
8.5.0.18[31] June 16, 2014 - Add Support BBM Protected
- increased limit transfer file to 16 MB
- 16 new emoticons
- improved the experience of adding new contacts via email
8.2.0.18 April 1, 2014 -Add more fun to your BBM chats with the introduction
of stickers available in the new BBM Shop
- Other bug fixes and performance improvements
8.1.0.20 February 13, 2014 - 100 new emoticons
- Get your point across
with great new emojis
8.0.0 November 26, 2013 BBM Channels
7.0.1 March 11, 2010 Bug fixes and stability improvements
7.0.0 March 11, 2010 - BBM Voice Chat
- A new selection of
emoticons is integrated
6.2.0 August 29, 2009 - Finnish language support
- Animated display pictures
- Change your name or message inline
- Streamlined voice notes
- BlackBerry Tag enhancements
- Resend a message
- Search contacts features
- Bug fixes & stability improvements
6.1.0 N/A N/A
6.0.1 N/A N/A
6.0.0 N/A Sharing Apps
5.0.1 N/A N/A
5.0.0 N/A N/A
1.0.0[32] August 1, 2005 N/A

BlackBerry 10

Version Released Notes
10.3.33.18 June 16, 2014 - Introducing support for BBM Protected - Support for chat wallpapers in the BBM Shop
- 16 new emoticons
- Improved experience for adding new BBM contacts by email
- Updates tab is now called ‘Feeds'
10.3.12.75 April 1, 2014 - Add more fun to your BBM chats with the introduction
of stickers available in the new BBM Shop
- Increased file transfer size (16MB) lets you share
higher quality photos, bigger files and longer videos
- Picture sharing in multi-person chats makes it easy to send a pic
to a group of people so you can all talk about it together
- Other bug fixes and performance improvements

Android

Version Released Notes
2.5.0.36 November 10, 2014 -Set how long contacts have access to messages and pictures shared in a chat. -‘Retract’ a message to remove it from your BBM chat. See the full description for more information. -Adding stickers to your BBM chats is now even quicker -It’s easier than ever to get a high quality version of pictures -See what music your contacts are listening in Feeds
2.4.0.11 September 21, 2014 -Simplified to attach images,files,and other content to a BBM chat. - In the application, renewal notices to help users download the latest version of BBM
- Ability to assess the user experience of BBM Voice call to call
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.3.0.14 July 31, 2014 A newly redesigned ‘Add Contacts’ screen where you can quickly and easily: - Add new contacts to BBM by PIN, email, SMS, and barcode
- Review and accept invites from other BBM users
- Find friends using BBM
- Invite address book contacts to download BBM
- Display your barcode and scan barcodes all in one screen
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.2.1.45 July 15, 2014 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.2.1.40 June 17, 2014 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.2.0.28 June 6, 2014 - Fix to address missing emotions - Fix to prevent some users from receiving
delayed messages after closing BBM
2.2.0.27 May 30, 2014 - Fix to prevent users from receiving
delayed messages after closing BBM
2.2.0.25 May 29, 2014 - Simple sign up for new BBM users - New sign in screen for existing BBM users
- Improved experience for adding new BBM contacts by email
- Updates tab has been renamed ‘Feeds’
- 16 new emoticons
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.1.1.53 April 18, 2014 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.1.0.40 April 1, 2014 - Add more fun to your BBM chats with the introduction
of stickers available in the new BBM Shop
- Increased file transfer size (16MB) lets you share
higher quality photos, bigger files and longer videos
- Picture sharing in multi-person chats makes it easy to send a pic
to a group of people so you can all talk about it together
- Other bug fixes and performance improvements
2.0.0.19 March 10, 2014 - Fix to enable sharing of emotions in status updates
- Improved response time when opening BBM chat and group screen
- Addresses issues that some users may have
experienced when receiving a URL in a BBM chat
- Includes optimizations to battery life when on a BBM Voice Call
February 18, 2014 Support Android 2.3.x (Gingerbread)
2.0.0.13 February 13, 2014 - BBM Voice - Free voice calls between BBM contacts - BBM Channels - join conversations happening now with
BBM users, brands, businesses, communities and more
- Faster, easier sharing – quickly add photos, voice notes,
files and attachments to your BBM chats from your
smartphone or Dropbox account integration
- Location sharing - Share your location temporarily,
powered by Glympse.
- 100 new emoticons
- Larger BBM Groups – You can now chat and share
with 50 people in your BBM Group
1.0.4.97 February 6, 2014 This new update makes it easy to quickly build your contact list by helping you find and add friends using BBM.
1.0.3.87 November 27, 2013 - Bug fixes including a fix that addresses an error that occurs while adding contact categories
1.0.2.83 November 14, 2013 - Support for BBM Contact Categories - BBM Group List sorting and filtering improvements
- More options for sharing your BBM PIN Barcode
- Find your friends on other social networks who are also using BBM
- Addresses an issue where some users may have experienced higher battery use
1.0.0.72 October 25, 2013 - Bug fixes and performance enhancements - Support for additional Android devices
1.0.0.70 October 21, 2013 Initial release
1.0.0.42 September 21, 2013 12:00 First release for Android: 12:00 NZST (Pulled Out)

iOS

Version Released Notes
2.5.0.26 October 31, 2014 - Timed Messages: Set how long contacts have access to messages
and pictures shared in a chat. - Message Retraction: 'Retract' a message to remove it from your BBM chat.
- A quicker Sticker Picker: Adding stickers to your BBM chats
is now even quicker with a new picker
- HD Picture Transfer: It's easier than ever to get a high quality
version of the pictures you receive in BBM.
- Discover Music: See what music your contacts are listening to in BBM Feeds.
See a song you like? Clicking it takes you right to iTunes to download.
- BBM Bulletins: Learn about the latest BBM products and services.
- BBM Feeds Improvements
2.4.1.35 September 23, 2014 - Updates to support iOS 8
- Resolves some issues experienced in right to left language support
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.4.0.15 September 4, 2014 - Simplified flow for attaching pictures, files, and other content to
BBM chats - In app upgrade notifications helps users to download the latest version
of BBM
- The ability for users to rate their call experience for BBM Voice calls
- Addresses a bug where users would receive repeated notifications
for messages they've previously viewed
2.3.1.14 August 14, 2014 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.3.0.12 August 11, 2014 - A newly redesigned 'Add Contacts' screen where you can quickly and
easily: Add new contacts to BBM by PIN, email, SMS, and barcode
Review and accept invites from other BBM users
Find friends using BBM
Invite address book contacts to download BBM
Display your barcode and scan barcodes all in one screen
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.2.1.24 June 18, 2014 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.2.0.19 June 2, 2014 - Simple sign up for new BBM users - New sign in screen for existing BBM users
- Improved experience for adding new BBM contacts by email
- Updates tab has been renamed ‘Feeds’
- 16 new emoticons
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.1.1.64 April 18, 2014 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
2.1.0.57 April 1, 2014 - Add more fun to your BBM chats with the introduction
of stickers available in the new BBM Shop
- Increased file transfer size (16MB) lets you share
higher quality photos, bigger files and longer videos
- Picture sharing in multi-person chats makes it easy to send
a pic to a group of people so you can all talk about it together
- Other bug fixes and performance improvements
2.0.1.36 February 25, 2014 - Fixes issues some users might be experiencing
when trying to create BBM Groups with 50 people - Addresses issues that some users may have experienced
when receiving a URL in a BBM chat
- Improved response time when opening a BBM Chat from notifications
- Includes optimizations to battery life when on a BBM Voice call
2.0.0.31 February 13, 2014 - BBM Voice - Free voice calls between BBM contacts
- BBM Channels - join conversations happening now with
BBM users, brands, businesses, communities and more
- Faster, easier sharing – quickly add photos, voice notes,
files and attachments to your BBM chats from
your smartphone or Dropbox account integration
- Location sharing - Share your location temporarily, powered by Glympse.
Your location is updated live on a map, right in BBM.
When the timer runs out your location is private again.
- 100 new emoticons – Get your point across with great new emojis
- Find Friends – Quickly find and add new BBM contacts
from your smartphone contact list
- Larger BBM Groups – You can now chat and share
with 50 people in your BBM Group
1.0.6.157 February 5, 2014 - This new update makes it easy to quickly build your contact list by helping you find and add friends using BBM.
1.0.5.134 December 7, 2013 - Bug fixes and performance improvements
1.0.4.133 November 14, 2013 - Support for iPod and iPad devices running iOS6 and iOS7 - Improvements to right-to-left language support
- More options for sharing your BBM PIN Barcode
- Find your friends on other social networks who are also using BBM
- Fixes an issue where some users would be missing BBM contact names
- Bug fixes and performance improvements
1.0.3.120 October 25, 2013 - Bug fixes
1.0.2.114 October 24, 2013 - Contact categories - List Sorting and filtering in BBM Groups
- Performance Improvements
- Bug fixes
1.0.1.108 October 21, 2013 Initial release - Optimizations for iOS7 and bug fixes to improve app performance
1.0.0.70 September 22, 2013 00:01 First release for iOS: 00:01 NZST (Pulled Out)
1.0.0.67 September 12, 2013 Beta for iOS: Invitation Only

Windows Phone

BBM for Windows Phone was released on the Windows Phone Store in 2014.[33]

References

  1. ^ http://blogs.blackberry.com/2015/07/looking-back-at-the-last-10-years-of-bbm/
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^ http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2013/09/why-did-cross-platform-bbm-fall-over-so-quickly/
  6. ^
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^
  10. ^
  11. ^
  12. ^
  13. ^
  14. ^
  15. ^
  16. ^
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^
  20. ^
  21. ^
  22. ^
  23. ^
  24. ^ Esposito, Dom. October 22, 2013. Mashable "5 Million People Downloaded BBM for iOS, Android in Just 8 Hours"
  25. ^
  26. ^ BBM coming to Windows Phone and Nokia X platforms. 24 February 2014
  27. ^
  28. ^ BBM beta update includes voice & channels. "BBM beta update"
  29. ^ a b
  30. ^ a b
  31. ^
  32. ^
  33. ^

Further reading

External links

  • Official website
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