BlackBerry Denies 27 June BlackBerry Messenger iOS Android Launch

Steve McCaskill is editor of TechWeekEurope and ChannelBiz. He joined as a reporter in 2011 and covers all areas of IT, with a particular interest in telecommunications, mobile and networking, along with sports technology.

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T-Mobile retracts claim of cross-platform BlackBerry Messenger release date in new tweet

BlackBerry has denied BlackBerry Messenger iOS and Android will be made available on 27 June, despite a tweet from UK operator T-Mobile indicating the release date was set in stone.

“On 14 May, BlackBerry announced plans to make its ground-breaking mobile social network, BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), available to iOS and Android users this summer, subject to approval by the Apple App Store and Google Play,” said BlackBerry in a statement. “While there have been reports that BBM will be available to iOS and Android on June 27th, this is not accurate. We will communicate an update as soon as we have an availability date to share.”

T-Mobile posted “Great news – BlackBerry Messenger will be available to download on iOS and Android from June 27th!  #BBM” on the microblogging site yesterday, but both the operator and its sister network Orange have now both issued tweets to the contrary.

BlackBerry Messenger iOS

RIM Blackberry Messenger“Sorry folks, we got over-excited about the #BBM app coming to Android / iOS. No specific availability date yet, stay tuned for details,” the new tweets said.

What is confirmed is that the first version of the iPhone and Android application will feature instant messaging, multi-person chats, voice note sharing and BlackBerry Groups which allow BBM users to share calendars, photos and files.

BBM was once one of the biggest selling points of the BlackBerry platform, but its importance has been reduced by the declining popularity of BlackBerry smartphones.

However, BBM still claims more than 60 million monthly active users with more than 50 million averaging an hour and a half hours of use every day. These users send and receive more than 10 billion messages every day, more than any other messaging platform, with almost more than half read within 20 seconds.

BlackBerry will hope that its cross-platform approach will ensure BBM’s continuing popularity and allow it to take advantage of the growing use of mobile instant messaging services, which now account for more traffic than SMS.

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