BlackBerry Messenger making its way to Android and iOS?

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from  Omaha, NE
| March 3, 2011

BlackBerry Messenger

BlackBerry Messenger has long been heralded as one of the best reasons to own one of RIM's smartphones, which offers a seamless messaging experience and has spawned quite a few imitators on other platforms. We've seen RIM go after one of these competitors in the past, but a new report claims that they'll soon be taking a different approach to knocking out the other cross-platform messaging services. The folks at BGR have heard from "multiple trusted sources" that RIM is planning to bring its BBM service to both Android and iOS. All of the details are still be hammered out, but the tipsters say that Android will come first with a launch likely coming some time this year, with iOS to follow some time later on. Pricing is still up in the air, as well, but users could either get access to BBM completely free or see either a one-time fee assessed or perhaps even recurring charges.

So what kind of experience can you expect with BBM on Android and iOS? According to BGR's sources, non-BlackBerry users won't get a totally full-fledged version of BBM, but they can still expect basic messaging capabilities. The ability to share photos, videos, etc. could stay exclusive to BlackBerry, that way users may be enticed to switched to one of RIM's smartphones if they want everything BBM has to offer.

RIM's market share may be falling lately, but BBM remains one of the biggest draws to the BlackBerry platform, and the popularity of other messaging services like Kik and WhatsApp show that there's demand for BBM-like software on other platforms, too. As long as RIM does BBM on Android and iOS right, they could have a huge, huge hit on their hands, even if its not the full BBM experience. What do you all think of this news? Would you pay for the ability to use BBM on your Android or iOS device?