BlackBerry Messenger (or BBM for short) is RIM's instant messaging service and one of its BlackBerry line of phones' major selling points. The service is home to 55 million BlackBerry users, and now, there are no plans to extend the service to other mobile operating systems.
All through last year, we had heard rumors about RIM's idea to port BBM to iOS and Android. But according to the Wall Street Journal, the Canadian mobile giant has scrapped its plans to do just that. The reason isn't quite clear – the Journal's sources say that Thorsten Heins, RIM's CEO, just said "no" to licensing deals – but I think I have a better reason than that.
Thorsten Heins may be new, but he's made some big strides in reinventing RIM. Most notably, he's removed some unnecessary executives (presumably) to make room for more innovative people so his company can stay competitive. He's also already made it clear that he's confident that BlackBerry 10 will be popular, and I think the move to not license BBM to other platforms is just another affirmation of his belief.
Think about it: BBM, if ported to iOS and Android, could've been outfitted with ads and would've become a huge cash cow for RIM if the company marketed it correctly. But device sales are a good way to make money, too, so it's apparent to me that Heins and his company believe BB10 and the devices that run it will be popular.
BBM will still be a service, but it will be BlackBerry OS-exclusive. We'll find out around October if that's a good idea. Until then, we can only assume that we'll see a big push for BlackBerry 10 from the company come fall.[Wall Street Journal via SlashGear]