BlackBerry teases BBM features coming in 2014, including BBM Voice and Channels for iOS and Android

Alex Wagner
Editorial Director of News and Content from  Omaha, NE
| December 19, 2013

BBM Voice for Android

BlackBerry Messenger for iPhone and Android finally made its debut in October following a month-long delay, and after the apps finally launched made it to market, BlackBerry teased its plans to load them up with new features like BBM Voice and BBM Channels. Today the company shed some more light on its plans for those additions as well some other goodies that it's got coming up.

On its official Inside BlackBerry blog, BlackBerry revealed that both BBM Voice and BBM Channels will be coming to its BBM for iPhone and Android apps in 2014. BBM Voice is exactly what it sounds like, allowing two BBM contacts to conduct a free voice call anywhere in the world. Meanwhile, BBM Channels is BlackBerry's new social network-y feature of BBM, allowing users to follow brands and people and also interact with them. BBM Channels officially came out of beta for BlackBerry devices last month.

BlackBerry also detailed some new features that are coming to its chat service next year. First is the ability to share things with BBM contacts quicker and easier. That includes photos, voice notes and a location sharing feature that will show the user's location on a map for a set period of time. When the timer runs out, the user's location is made private again. BlackBerry also says that it's got 100 new emoticons coming soon.

Overall it sounds like BlackBerry's got some nice new features headed for its BBM apps in 2014. The only downside is that it's not clear exactly when in 2014 these goodies will be launching. Folks that are champing at the bit to give them a go will be glad to hear that BlackBerry plans to beta test the new features on iPhone, Android and BlackBerry 10 sometime "in the coming months," so that's something to keep an eye out for as we head into 2014.

Do you use BlackBerry Messenger on your Android, BlackBerry or iOS device? If so, how often do you fire the app up?

BBM Channels for Android

Via Inside BlackBerry