What’s up With BBM for Android and iPhone

BBM for Android and iPhone



BBM, or BlackBerry Messenger, was once one of the most popular messaging apps, especially for BlackBerry smartphone users. It allowed people to send messages, photos, voice notes and more to each other for free. In 2013, BlackBerry announced that it would make BBM available for Android and iOS devices in addition to BlackBerry phones. This opened up BBM to a whole new audience.

The launch of BBM for Android and iPhone was not smooth. The apps were supposed to launch simultaneously on September 21, 2013. However, due to a leak, the Android version launched early and was downloaded over 1 million times in 8 hours. This put massive strain on BlackBerry’s servers. As a result, the official launch was delayed until the issues were resolved.

When BBM did officially launch for Android and iOS, it saw impressive adoption. Within the first 24 hours, BBM was downloaded 10 million times on Google Play and Apple’s App Store. The demand exceeded BlackBerry’s expectations. At one point, new users were being added at a rate of 2 million per day.

One of the key attractions of BBM was its reliability as a messenger. It used PINs rather than phone numbers or usernames, so people could be sure messages were coming from the right contact. BBM also informed users when messages were delivered and read, which many text messaging apps did not do at the time.

Over the next several years, BBM added features like voice chat, video chat, Channels, and an integration with Slack. However, it soon faced stiff competition from apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, LINE and others. These apps could offer calling and messaging for free using just a user’s phone number.

In 2016, BlackBerry announced that it would stop developing its proprietary operating system and focus on security software and applications. This meant apps like BBM would have to adapt to survive without BlackBerry’s ecosystem.

Today, BBM is still available for Android, iOS, and even Windows devices. However, it has been vastly overshadowed in the messaging space. Apps like WhatsApp now have over a billion daily users, while BBM has declined significantly. Still, it was an early pioneer in cross-platform messaging before most others.

What is BBM for Android and iPhone?

BBM stands for BlackBerry Messenger. It is a cross-platform instant messaging app developed by BlackBerry Limited. Originally, BBM was exclusive to BlackBerry devices. It enabled users to chat securely through sending messages, photos, voice notes and more to each other.

A key feature of BBM was its use of PINs rather than phone numbers or usernames. This helped ensure privacy and security. Users could add contacts through exchanging PINs. BBM also provided confirmation when messages were delivered and read.

In 2013, BlackBerry opened up BBM to Android and iOS devices. This vastly expanded its potential userbase. Within the first day of launch, over 10 million people downloaded BBM on Google Play and the App Store. It was one of the first mainstream cross-platform messaging apps.

Over the years, BBM added capabilities like voice and video calling, social channels and integration with Slack. However, it faced mounting competition from apps like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and others.

Today, BBM continues to operate but with a significantly smaller userbase than its prime. Still, it paved the way for secure, cross-platform messaging. BBM demonstrated the demand for chat apps that worked across operating systems.

BBM for Android and iPhone

Why use BBM?

BBM, or BlackBerry Messenger, has some key features that make it a useful instant messaging platform. Here are some of the main reasons why people use BBM:

Privacy and Security – BBM uses PINs rather than phone numbers or usernames. This provides increased privacy and security, as users’ personal information is not exposed. The encrypted network also helps keep messages safe.

Reliability – BBM for Android and iPhone provides delivery and read receipts, so users can see when their messages have been successfully received and opened by the recipient. This helps improve reliability in messaging.

Cross-platform – BBM for Android and iPhone works across Android, iOS, and Windows devices. This makes it easy to stay connected with contacts using different operating systems and smartphones.

Cost – Using capabilities like chat, voice messages and phone/video calls on BBM does not utilize cellular data. It enables free messaging and calling over WiFi or a BlackBerry data plan.

Group chats – BBM supports groups chats with up to 30 participants, enabling team communication. Users can share photos, documents, voice notes and more through these chats.

Integrations – BBM can integrate with tools like Slack for business messaging. It also offers Channels for following brands and influencers.

While alternatives like WhatsApp now dominate, BBM still offers a unique secure messaging experience and pioneered cross-platform accessibility.

What are the features of BBM?

Some of the main features that make BBM a versatile messaging app include:

  • Encrypted messaging – BBM uses end-to-end encryption to secure messages, photos, videos and files shared between users. This helps ensure privacy.
  • Delivered and read notifications – These notifications let users know when their messages have been successfully delivered and read by recipients.
  • PIN contacts – Contacts are connected through unique BBM PINs rather than phone numbers, enhancing privacy.
  • Group chats – BBM for Android and iPhone supports groups chats with up to 30 participants, enabling team collaboration.
  • Voice and video calling – Users can make voice and video calls to contacts through BBM using WiFi or data.
  • Voice messages – Users can exchange voice recordings and notes with contacts.
  • Channels – BBM Channels provide a social media-like experience for following brands, celebrities and influencers.
  • Photo and file sharing – Users can share photos, videos, documents and other files through private and group chats.
  • Location sharing – The app allows users to share and view locations with contacts.
  • Slack integration – BBM can integrate with Slack for secure team messaging and collaboration.

Overall, BBM provides a full suite of secure messaging capabilities in a cross-platform experience. Its focus on privacy helps differentiate it from other chat apps.

How does BBM work?

BBM uses data plans or WiFi to facilitate messaging between users. It works on a user’s existing phone number and does not require a separate username.

To start using BBM, users download and install the app on their smartphone and create an account. This generates a unique 8-digit BBM PIN that acts as the ID.

To add a contact, users can exchange BBM PINs and search for each other in the app. Upon sending a connection request and getting accepted, they are added to each other’s contact list.

Once connected, users can begin chatting in a private message thread. This allows them to exchange text messages, photos, videos, voice notes, documents and more.

BBM uses end-to-end encryption to secure these messages in transit and at rest. The encrypted data is sent through BlackBerry’s messaging servers.

The app provides notifications when messages are delivered to the recipient’s device and when they are opened and read. This confirmation gives users assurance about their messages being received.

BBM also includes capabilities like group messaging, voice and video calling over WiFi, location sharing and integration with business tools like Slack.

Altogether, BBM provides a full suite of messaging features with an emphasis on security and privacy. Its use of PINs and encryption helps safeguard communication between contacts.

BBM for Android

BBM, or BlackBerry Messenger, was one of the early pioneers in instant messaging, originally exclusive to BlackBerry devices. In 2013, BlackBerry announced it was opening up BBM to Android and iOS smartphones, vastly expanding its potential userbase.

The Android version of BBM launched on October 21, 2013 after an early unauthorized leak led to its release being delayed. Within the first 24 hours, over 10 million Android users downloaded BBM from the Google Play Store. This surge in demand overwhelmed BlackBerry’s servers temporarily.

Setting Up BBM for Android To start using BBM, Android users can download the app from the Google Play Store for free. After installing, they need to create an account with their phone number and a chosen display name. This generates a unique 8 digit BBM PIN that acts as the ID.

BBM does not require users’ actual phone numbers or usernames to connect. Instead, contacts can be added by exchanging BBM PINs and sending connection requests. Upon acceptance, the contacts get added to each other’s lists.

Core Messaging Features The core functionality of BBM on Android enables free, secure messaging between contacts. Users can exchange text messages, photos, videos, voice notes, documents and more, both one-on-one and in groups.

BBM uses end-to-end encryption for security and privacy. Important messaging features include delivered and read notifications, letting users know when their messages have reached and been opened by recipients.

Advanced Capabilities Over time, BBM added more advanced features to its Android app including:

  • Voice and Video Calls – Make free WiFi-based voice and video calls in high definition.
  • BBM Channels – Follow brands, celebrities and influencers through public online channels.
  • Location Sharing – Share real-time locations or places of interest with contacts.
  • Slack Integration – Use BBM for Android and iPhone within Slack for secure team communication.
  • Enterprise Tools – Manage company messaging and collaborations through BBM Enterprise.

While alternatives like WhatsApp now dominate messaging, BBM for Android pioneered secure, cross-platform chat before most others. Its focus on privacy still gives it a unique advantage in the space.

How to download and install BBM on Android

To download and install BBM on your Android device, follow these steps:

  1. Open Google Play Store
    • Launch the Play Store app on your Android device. This is used to download Android apps.
  2. Search for “BBM”
    • In the Play Store search bar, type in “BBM” and hit search.
    • Look for the BBM app by “BlackBerry Limited”. This is the official app.
  3. Install BBM
    • Tap “Install” next to the BBM app listing.
    • The app will now download and install on your device.
  4. Open BBM
    • Once installed, open your app drawer and tap the BBM icon to launch it.
  5. Create New Account
    • You will need to register for a new BBM account using your phone number.
    • Confirm your number via a verification code sent through SMS.
  6. Setup Profile
    • Add your name or a display name to be shown to your contacts.
    • BBM will generate a unique 8-digit PIN for you to use on the service.
  7. Start Chatting
    • BBM is now ready to use! Begin adding contacts and messaging.

This completes the download and installation process for BBM on your Android device. You can now start using the app!

How to create a BBM account

To create a new BBM account, first download and install the BBM app on your smartphone from the App Store or Google Play Store. Open the app and tap to sign up for a new account. You will need to enter your phone number and confirm it through an SMS code sent to that number. This verifies you as the owner.

Next, add your name or a display name you want shown to your BBM contacts. The app will now generate a unique 8-digit BBM PIN for you. This PIN acts as your ID on BBM. Make sure to write it down. Your BBM account setup is now complete! You can start adding contacts through exchanging PINs and get chatting.

BBM for Android and iPhone

How to add friends on BBM

Adding friends on BBM is quick and simple. First, your friend needs to have BBM installed on their smartphone. You can then exchange BBM PINs, which act as your IDs on the service.

In the BBM app, tap on the menu icon and select “Add Connection”. Enter your friend’s 8-digit BBM PIN and tap “Send Invite”. This will send them a contact request.

Once your friend accepts the request, they will be added to your BBM for Android and iPhone contacts list. You can now start chatting with them, exchange photos/media, make BBM calls and more.

The process works the same in reverse – your friend can add you by using your BBM PIN to send a contact request. Adding many friends helps maximize BBM’s messaging capabilities.

How to use the BBM features

To send a chat message, open a conversation thread and type out your text. Hit send to deliver it instantly. You can send photos, videos and other media the same way.

To make a BBM voice or video call, tap the phone or camera icon at the top during a chat. These work over WiFi so won’t use cellular minutes.

To create a BBM group, tap the menu icon and select “Create Group”. Add up to 30 contacts. All members can chat, send media and join group calls.

To use BBM Channels, tap the channels tab and browse or search for brands to follow their posts.

Turn on read receipts in settings to see when messages are delivered and read. Overall, explore the options to discover BBM’s full suite of messaging features.

How to troubleshoot BBM problems on Android

If you’re having issues with BBM for Android and iPhone on your Android device, first check if the app needs updating in the Google Play Store. Updating to the latest version can fix bugs. Also try force quitting the app and restarting your phone to clear any glitches.

Check that you have a stable internet connection through WiFi or mobile data – connection issues can disrupt messaging. Make sure your date/time settings are correct as well.

Look at BBM’s FAQ and help sections for guidance on specific problems. Reinstalling the app as a last resort may resolve persistent technical issues. Contact BlackBerry customer support if problems continue, who can help troubleshoot further based on your specific situation.

How to download and install BBM on iPhone

Downloading and installing BBM on your iPhone only takes a few quick steps:

  1. Open the App Store on your iPhone. You can find this preinstalled or in your home screen folders.
  2. Use the search bar at the bottom to search for “BBM”. Make sure it is the app by BlackBerry Limited.
  3. Tap “Get” next to the BBM app listing. Since it is a free download, you won’t be charged.
  4. The App Store will now begin downloading and installing BBM onto your device. Depending on your internet connection, this may take a few minutes.
  5. Once the download is complete, you will see the BBM app icon appear on your iPhone’s home screen. You can also find it by swiping right to access search.
  6. Tap to launch the newly installed BBM app. It will guide you through creating a new account using your phone number.
  7. Confirm your phone number and add a display name. BBM will generate a unique 8-digit PIN for you.
  8. That’s it! BBM is ready to use. Start adding contacts, creating groups, making calls and sending secure messages.

The app provides additional onboarding instructions the first time you open it. Enjoy seamlessly chatting across platforms with BBM for iPhone!

How to create a BBM account

Creating an account is the first step to start using BBM for Android and iPhone across your devices. Here is how to make a new BBM account:

  1. Download and install the BBM for Android and iPhone app on your smartphone, whether iPhone or Android, from the respective app store.
  2. Open the freshly installed app. On the home screen you will see options to either sign in to an existing account or create a new account. Tap on “Create Account”.
  3. It will prompt you to enter your phone number. Type in your phone number with country code and tap submit.
  4. BBM will send a 6-digit verification code via text to that phone number. Type in the code once received and tap submit again.
  5. If verification is successful, you can now setup your profile. Add your name or a display name you want shown to your contacts.
  6. BBM uses a unique 8-digit PIN as your ID rather than your phone number. The app will generate this PIN, which you can view and copy down.
  7. That’s it! Your BBM account is now fully created. You can start adding contacts via PIN, create groups and begin messaging securely.

The process is quick and easy. Just download, verify your number, set a name and get your PIN to start using BBM.

How to add friends on BBM

Adding contacts on BBM for Android and iPhone requires exchanging BBM PINs. This 8-digit personal identification number acts as your ID.

To add a friend, first make sure they have BBM for Android and iPhone downloaded on their device. Ask them to share their BBM PIN with you.

Open BBM on your phone and tap the menu icon. Go to “Add Connection” and select “Add Contact”. Enter your friend’s PIN here.

Tap send to dispatch a connection request. When your friend accepts, they will be added to your BBM contacts.

Similarly, provide your PIN when your friend wants to add you back. Receiving and accepting the request will add them.

Once connected as BBM contacts, you and your friend can start direct messaging, create groups and make calls.

How to use the BBM features

To start a chat, simply open a conversation thread with a contact and type out your message. Hit send to deliver it instantly. Share photos, videos and files the same way.

Make free voice or video calls over WiFi by tapping the phone or camera icon during a chat.

Create a BBM Group by tapping the menu and selecting “New Group”. Add up to 30 contacts to group message.

Use BBM Channels to follow and message brands, celebrities and influencers you like.

Enable read receipts in Settings to see when messages are delivered and read.

Stay up-to-date with new features in the Discover tab like polls, notes and event planners.

Explore BBM’s full suite of messaging capabilities. With secure encryption and cross-platform use, it offers a unique chat experience.

How to troubleshoot BBM problems on iPhone

If you experience problems using BBM for Android and iPhone on your iPhone, first try force quitting and relaunching the app to clear any glitches. Check the App Store for BBM for Android and iPhone app updates which may contain bug fixes.

Ensure your iPhone software is updated to the latest iOS version as well. Verify your internet connection is working properly via WiFi or cellular data.

Examine BBM’s FAQ section or online troubleshooting guides for help with specific issues. Restarting your iPhone can also help clear temporary bugs.

As a last resort, uninstall and reinstall BBM for Android and iPhone to do a clean reset. Contact Apple Support or BlackBerry customer service for additional troubleshooting if problems persist.

BBM Features

BBM Feature Description
One-to-one chat Send instant messages, photos, videos and files privately to a contact.
Group chat Chat with up to 30 people in a group conversation.
File sharing Share documents, photos, videos and other files up to 16MB in size.
Voice calls Make free voice calls to contacts over WiFi.
Video calls Conduct free HD video calls with contacts.
Status updates Share text, emoji or photos as your status visible to contacts.
Stickers Use fun illustrated stickers to spice up chats.
Themes Customize chat backgrounds and contact colors.
Privacy settings Control read receipts, who can contact you and more.

BBM offers a full suite of messaging features. Its encrypted network provides secure communications between contacts. Unique PIN IDs add privacy. Overall, BBM enables robust messaging across platforms.

BBM Competition

WhatsApp – This mobile messaging app owned by Meta has over 2 billion users globally. WhatsApp dominates with features like group chat, voice/video calling, minimal UI and extensive cross-platform use.

Facebook Messenger – Facebook’s own messaging platform has over 1 billion users. Tight integration with Facebook gives Messenger a strong user base. Useful chat features and stickers make it popular.

WeChat – Massively successful in China, WeChat has over 1.2 billion monthly active users. It offers much more than just messaging, with a platform for payments, food delivery, ride sharing and more.

Telegram – This chat app prioritizes speed, encryption and privacy. Telegram has 500 million users attracted to its secure messaging and extensive features like channels.

Signal – Focused on security, Signal uses state-of-the-art end-to-end encryption. Its open source code and minimal data collection give Signal robust privacy protections.

While once a leader in messaging, BBM for Android and iPhone has seen its user base decline with the rise of these competitors. However, BBM retains core strengths around privacy and security that differentiate it in the competitive messaging space.

BBM for Android and iPhone

BBM Cost

BBM, or BlackBerry Messenger, is entirely free to download and use with no upfront costs. Users can download the BBM app from their device’s app store for free and sign up for an account at no charge. There are no subscription fees or monthly payments required.

Once set up, all of BBM’s core messaging capabilities can be used for free. This includes text chats, voice/video calls over WiFi, sharing photos/media, group messaging and more.

BBM does not contain any paid tiers or premium features locked behind a paywall. There are also no in-app purchases available within BBM for Android and iPhone currently. Users do not need to buy virtual coins, tokens or points to unlock functionality.

The app is supported by advertisements displayed within the UI. These unobtrusive ads help fund the continued development of BBM. However, users are not required to click or engage with the ads in any way.

While free alternatives like WhatsApp now dominate the messaging space, the lack of cost was one of BBM’s early advantages. It enabled free messaging between BlackBerry device owners. Today, BBM remains entirely free as the developers continue to evolve the platform.


BBM pioneered cross-platform messaging and remains a solid choice for secure communication today. Its core strengths are end-to-end encryption for privacy and unique PIN IDs for contacts. BBM for Android and iPhone enables chatting, calling, sharing media and collaborating across devices. Free usage and frequent updates are other advantages.

However, BBM has declined in usage as competitors like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and others have dominated the messaging space. It lacks some more advanced features available from rivals. Support and development resources are limited compared to tech giants.

For those prioritizing privacy and security, BBM is still compelling. But most mobile users today opt for convenience and ubiquitous platforms like WhatsApp.

Alternatives to BBM for Android and iPhone match or exceed its capabilities while offering larger built-in user bases. However, BBM for Android and iPhone retains an appeal among core users who value its encryption and cross-platform access.

In the future, BBM for Android and iPhone could further differentiate itself by building out business collaboration features. But the consumer messaging space is likely out of reach due to the dominance of a few major players.

Rehmath Ali, a native of Mumbai, is a highly accomplished professional in business and marketing. After completing his MBA at Oriental College, he quickly rose through the ranks to become a successful independent businessperson. With a profound passion for his work, Rehmath views it as a source of relaxation. Over the past 11 years, he has excelled as a Business Development Manager, making a significant impact in the telecommunications industry. Despite coming from a family with a background in the Gold business, Rehmath chose to pursue a different path, focusing on telecommunications. His expertise lies in handling voice and services for My Country Mobile. Under his guidance, the business has experienced remarkable growth, with a consistent annual increase of 30%. Notably, the Voice Vertical has generated millions of dollars in revenue. Currently, Rehmath serves as the Head of the Callmama Division at My Country Mobile, aiming to surpass one million customers by 2024.


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