BBM downloads reach over 10 million on first day

Over 10 million users download BlackBerry Messenger for Android and iPhone on the first day it was available.
BlackBerry Messenger for Android and iPhone was downloaded over 10 million times in the first 24 hours it was available. (Graeme Roy/The Canadian Press)

Within 24 hours of the launch of BlackBerry Messenger for Android and iPhone, the app has been downloaded over 10 million times, BlackBerry is reporting. 

"BBM is looking great on iPhone, Android and BlackBerry, and the team here is very excited about the success of this launch," said Andrew Bocking, head of BBM operations in a blog post on the company's website.

In one day, BBM has moved up the Apple App Store rankings to the top spot for free apps in 75 countries including Canada, the United States and the United Kingdom, according to BlackBerry

In September, a preliminary version of the BBM software for Android was leaked online. That version caused conflicts for some users, the company said, and briefly appeared to put a cloud over both the new product and the already-troubled Waterloo, Ont.-based tech company. 

The BBM instant messaging service has been a popular feature for Blackberry users because it allows real-time text messages on a secure server, but does not require a customer to purchase an SMS text package from a wireless carrier.

Independent tech analyst Carmi Levy says although other cross-platform messenger services such as WhatsApp have been more widespread in recent years, he believes the current popularity in BBM for iPhone and Android is because the app creates a greater comfort level with smartphone users. 

"WhatsApp is good, but BBM, there's a higher level of trust, a higher perception of security, a higher perception of functionality," said Levy. "Given the choice, I think people would rather have the BlackBerry-branded solution on their device instead of something from another company." 

BlackBerry has said it wants to turn BBM into a revenue generator for the company through advertising partnerships.

With files from the Canadian Press


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