BBM for iOS And Android Hits 20 Million Downloads

Michelle Maisto covers mobile devices, Android and Apple for eWEEK and is also a food writer.

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BBM for iOS and Android reaches 20 million downloads in first week and is used by 80 million people

BlackBerry has revealed the cross-platform version of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) has now been downloaded by 20 million users in its first week on the Google Play and App Store marketplaces.

The Canadian manufacturer had intended to release the application last month, but halted the rollout following complications caused by the leak of an unreleased version of the Android version, however once it was released last week, it secured more than ten million users in the first 24 hours, bringing the total number of monthly BBM users to 80 million

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BBM iPhone 2“It is great to see so many people downloading BBM, but the true measure for us is engagement – the connections being made and the conversations in which our BBM community engages,” Andrew Bocking, executive vice president of BBM, said in a statement. “The power of BBM has always been the active, real conversations and interaction that our customers enjoy.”

BBM is a text-messaging app that further enables users to share photos and voice notes, as well as Facebook-like status updates. Up to 30 people can chat in a BBM Group at once, and there’s the option to be identified by a PIN number instead of a user name – a perk that BlackBerry says saves users from giving their phone number or email to a casual contact.

The figures are a boost for BlackBerry, which has announced massive losses and a programme of job cuts as it seeks to focus on services following the dramatic decline of its hardware business.

BBM has long been considered one of the company’s more valuable assets and there were even suggestions it was considering spinning off its messaging division into a subsidiary.

A number of companies are believed to be interested in acquiring BlackBerry, including Google, Intel, SAP and most recently Lenovo, although the firm has a preliminary sale agreement with its largest shareholder, Fairfax Holdings for £2.9 billion.

BlackBerry has had a bumpy year! Try our 2013 BlackBerry quiz!

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