BlackBerry wasn’t in a hurry to release BBM, the official messenger for mobile devices running Android. The process took too much time, causing a situation when a part of BBM’s fans has quit waiting in favor of competitors. Still, the army of loyal users has managed to consist of over 100 million just in a year after release.
BBM is well-known for its stable performance and a great amount of private communication and it’s prized for this. With time it has transformed into a strange mix of free and paid features with the latter overwhelming. Let’s check these issues in a review.
Starting with BBM
After logging in, you get your personal PIN code which is a sort of unique nickname used for searching and inviting others into a chat. A standard one consists just of a random set of letters and numerals; so, if you wish to have something more euphonic, be ready to pay for it every month. Moreover, do not forget to renew your subscription in time as your unique PIN may be taken by another user.
Set your profile image – it may be a photo, just a nice pic, or even a GIF – and current status to show your mood and planned activity. They are free of charge, in case you inquire.
And then starts the most unpleasant and boring part of an installation – contacts adding. In fact, you’ll have to spam with invitations, if just some of your friends are already the community members. Besides, there is another variant – to search for friends or just strangers by their PINs. Anyway, it’s a time-consuming process.
User Interface and Customization
Perhaps, BlackBerry Messenger offers the largest Settings Menu among the similar apps. Here you may enable/disable the icon, tune the notifications (vibration, melody, and color of LED), adjust the font size in chats, set the Security Question in invitations, and switch on/off other keyboard functions. Moreover, users can back up chats or delete the whole history.
In general, the app is well-designed in accordance with the Material Design strategy. It is clean and user-friendly. Sometimes, it even reminds of Facebook Messenger by the white-and-blue color scheme.
Opening the BBM
Channels section allows you to view various information sources, such as TechnoBuffalo, Gentlemen Club, Time, Today in History, Amazing Pictures, etc. and read their trending stories. Besides, users are also supposed to share their thoughts with others in the comments, joining the conversation. If you feel it’s your cup of tea, you have a chance to create a new channel for sharing your creative ideas, wise thoughts, or interesting stories from your life.
You’ll be notified of a sent message status – delivered/read. The messages include text, pictures, recordings, locations, documents, etc. Group chats may include up to 50 participants. The admin of a group can either enable or disable the option of letting the participants invite other users.
We are pretty sure that there exists a definite group of users which prefers to communicate via sending emoticons and stickers only. So, you guys may be disappointed to know that all the sticker packs should be paid for. It’s a huge drawback, BlackBerry!
Has a thought of sending a private or even a provocative message ever crossed your mind? The answer is definitely yes and you can do this via the temporary or timed messages with a set time of their availability. When the time is up, messages magically vanish. Besides, if you have noticed a mistake in the already-sent message or just would like to delete it, there is such an option offered. And here’s the catch – you can’t send more than three timed messages or retract the same number of ordinary messages without a payment-based subscription where these options are unlimited.
You can also invite someone into a private chat. Its advantages are just awesome – even if another user makes a screenshot of your chat, there will be no names. Consequently, no one will be able to prove that it was you who shared the information.
Be aware of the fact that the battery consumption of the app is rather high as it always works in the background. The icon in the upper part of the screen will show you that BBM is active. Tap on it and start chatting – that’s it. Users may turn this option off, but then they won’t be notified that a new message arrived till a user launches the app manually.
The Bottom Line
To summarize all the before mentioned information, we would like to give BBM a prize for its great functionality and well-done design. Yet, there is one general rule to remember: if you decide to use BBM, get ready to pay for almost everything. In fact, the messenger isn’t even a real option for those people, who would like to use the free features included only. Don’t forget that there are other apps
in the market offering googd opportunities for free as basic ones.
Otherwise, in case you can afford spending a couple of dollars a month to buy all the necessary subscriptions, BlackBerry Messenger will surprise you with all the stuff and accessories available as well as with its stable work.