Posted in: Android, iOS, Mobile Services, Social Networks

BBM for Android should be available by 2012, get your thumbs ready

You read correctly, we heard rumblings of such peculiar goings on for a little while prior to this post, and this is just adding to the rumor mill.

BBM icon on Android OS

Purportedly the iPhone 4S is to play as guinea pig for the iOS build of BlackBerry’s Messenger service and now we are hearing through the grapevine that Android users might get in on some BBM action too.

We can’t avoid stoking the fires of speculation here, but of course following tomorrow’s iPhone-centric announcement in Cupertino, our guesses today might be carrying a little more weight.

The tipster surrounding this tidbit of information told T3′s tech blog a little about the state of BBM for Android. By the sounds of it, the service is in the ‘final stages of testing‘ and ‘should be out by 2012‘.

BBM on Android OS screensBBM on Android OS screensBBM on Android OS screens

As you can see, ignoring that battered and bruised display, we have what appears to be both an in-app and home screen view of BBM on an Android device. The tipster also explained that the app’s integration with Android seemed to be working well, specifically with regards to push notifications, so good to know, if this isn’t a hoax.

The question here that might be lingering in the minds of some of you is, why would RIM distribute one of the key features, previously unique to their handsets, to the competition?

The truth of the matter is that RIM have been losing their smartphone-cred at increasing pace over the past few years. With the boom of the iPhone and the stream of Android devices flooding the market, RIM have had to try considerably harder to maintain their customer base and their credibility.

It’s true that they are probably some of the most secure devices around, especially for business scenarios, but the smartphone market is no longer reserved for heavy-tech users and business types alone. As such, this move might be an attempt at quelling the numbers of users moving away from BB OS as a platform. If you can communicate more readily with your friends on different OS’s, you have less reason to jump ship in order to join them.

Also, in a more short term instance, word has it that a large amount of money must have gone over to RIM in order for them to even think about releasing the service onto iOS and perhaps Google have paid the same price here.

As we said, this time tomorrow we will know just how well this rumor holds up, until then, you have to decide for yourself.

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