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Rumor: RIM drops plans to bring BBM to Android, iPhone

updated 09:48 am EDT, Fri May 25, 2012

Unnamed source disputes rumored BBM on other platforms

Research in Motion may not open up its BlackBerry Messenger service as previously thought. Rumors that the BBM service would expand to Android handsets and iPhones, as evidenced by a photo of a beta app, are in doubt following the replacement of Mike Lazaridis and Jim Balsillie by chief executive Thorsten Heins, according to an unnamed source speaking to the Wall Street Journal.

RIM's market share in the US has dropped from 50 percent to less than 10 percent, and, with the rise of cross-platform messaging services, the number of users relying on BBM has also been in decline. Expanding BBM to other platforms would not only bring brand exposure to the phone manufacturer, but would also potentially lead to another revenue stream with subscription charges to the service. Talk of service expansion dried up after Heins became chief executive, with an unnamed source familiar with the plans saying the matter was "not up for discussion."

Other messaging systems over the last few years have gained in popularity compared to BBM, which has lost out to Apple iMessage on the iPhone and various apps that support and in some cases consolidate competing services. Manufacturing competitor Samsung runs its own ChatON cross-platform messaging apps and launched a BlackBerry version in April to match the iOS, Bada and Android clients.

BBM for Android from TechnoBuffalo

by MacNN Staff



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