Friday, May 31, 2019 was the last day of BlackBerry’s free messaging service.It announced last month that it would shut down the consumer service, which has been steadily losing users grand failing to attract new ones. As a consolation for diehard fans, BlackBerry opened BBM Enterprise, its enterprise-grade encrypted Messenger (BBMe), for personal use. That’s available on Android, iOS, Windows and Mac and yes, Blackberry phones.
BlackBerry Messenger, was rolled out in 2005, two years before the very first iPhone. At the time, it was the gold-standard for messaging services. But since the age of the smartphone, and with services like iMessage and the huge variety of other messaging services and apps, BBM is the least relevant it’s ever been in 2019.BBMe its brand new messaging app is a secure messaging platform that protects your personal information, “BlackBerry writes on its website.
“It doesn’t track your contacts, where you’re messaging from, or what you’re sharing and discussing. Create a closed social circle by establishing contact relationships through an invitation request and accept the process. Instead of a phone number, BBMe only requires an email address, and BlackBerry promises “it won’t suggest contacts to users or sell user’s phone numbers,” according to the site. “Secure end-to-end signing and encryption protects all BBMe messages from eavesdropping or manipulation.”A one-year free trial of BBMe is currently available in the Apple app store, but BlackBerry could start charging for its services in the future.It costs $2.50 for a six-month subscription as far as subscriptions go, that’s not too bad, but paying for a messaging service these days when there are so many other free options available means that only the most dedicated of die-hard BBM fans will opt for BBMe.
Despite many efforts, the platform’s popularity continues to diminish.At various points, it sued Twitter, Facebook and Snap over patent infringement. And once it surprised many by adding Uber to the BBM app .Now time will tell if it continues to shore up its position in secure communication with the reinvention of BBM as BBMe.