For those of you not used to ‘text speech’ the above two acronyms stand for BlackBerry Messenger For The Win.
Just like Mark Zuckerberg’s idea of exclusivity regarding Facebook, BBM is all about exclusive. This great Instant Messenger services is only compatible with BlackBeryy to BlackBerry requiring what’s called a BlackBerry pin which is a device pin unique to each handset.
So why do I like bbm?
Just to put it ‘simply’, what I like about BBM:
- Push notifications – BBM integrates with BlackBerry messages and provides push messaging service thus making it easier to read and send messages
- Message delivery and read report – Each message sent sees the clock symbol change to a tick. This is then followed by a tick with a ‘D’ next to it standing for delivered, which changed to a tick with a ‘R’ when the message has been read. Thus the sender is aware if the message has been read. And thus if your friend is not replying to you, its not because they didnt get the message (excuse usually works with text messaging), its because they dont like you. Live with it.
Is this message delivery and read report really a good thing? You can decide that for yourself, in another post, I will explain how to bypass the status change. Thus how to read the message without the sender knowing that you have read them yet. Thus ensuring that you dont have to reply instantly. This should be coming very soon, probably in the next post actually, but if i forget, bother me on twitter @MSingh_5
- Exclusivity – BBM is exclusive to BlackBerry only. You can only send BBM messages from a network registered device to another network registered device. End off.
- Doesn’t suck power – From what I’ve experienced, BBM doesn’t actually use much battery, but you wouldn’t really be able to tell the difference, as you cannot ‘close’ the BBM application as such, its always running in the background.
- Simplicity – Not that I’m a technophobe or anything . . .like any other Instant Messaging (IM) service that took off and was succesful, BBM is simple. Its simple to use, simple to update your profile picture (any camera picture or otherwise), simple to edit display name, simple to change/update personal message and simple to change status.
- Recent Updates – Any changes, status updates from your contacts can be viewed in a menu called ‘recent updates’. This feature is similar to many other IMs and is pretty much self explanatory so not going to bother explaining!
- Send/Receive files – Like any other good IM service, you can send an receive digital files. (There is a size limit though)
- PING!!! – another great and exclusive feature is the PING!!! (although similar to the ‘nudge’ on MSN messenger, not actually sure which came first, but I’m guessing it was MSN)
- Broadcast – annoying or a great tool? A Broadcast message is a message to one or many of the contacts (can be sent to all contacts), this message shows up in purple to the receivers, and is just what it says it is: a broadcast message.
- Security – all BBM messages are encrypted and are routed through the BlackBerry servers.
- International – yes you can send BBM messages to anybody in the whole wide world with a BlackBerry device with a registered pin.
- WiFi/3G/GPRS – Yes BBM will work over any signal!
- BB PIN – you dont need to give out or share your phone number. All communication is made with the BBPin. So no dodgy ex’s stalking you. You can block pins from contacting you and in the worst of cases, just get a new handset. New handset, new pin, same number.
- Free – BBM is a free service (as long as you’re paying your service provider a connection charge to the BlackBerry servers). You are not charged to send messages, neither are you have a limit on how many messages you can send, unlike limits and costs related text messages.
What i don’t like about BBM? (Yes, this list exists):
- Broadcasts – Yes broadcasts can be annoying. You get stupid broadcasts like ‘chats?’ where people are begging for attention and need to converse with somebody as they are pathetic and have nothing better to do. Or other stupid broadcasts.
- PING!!! – They vibrate! Yes you can turn this off, but they vibrate! I would like to be able to toggle the vibration on or off for different contacts.
- Switch Off – Yes you cannot turn BBM ‘off’. You can disable notifications, but you can’t go offline. Although that’s not necessarily a bad thing you see, as BBM is there to be left on, at all times, under all costs!
- Emoticons – simply put: BBM needs more and animated emoticons.
- Integrated apps – recently there have been a few apps which let you communicate play games with your BBM contacts, but nothing major. If BlackBerry wanted, they could turn BBM into a huge social network, and they will provide Facebook with a good competition!
So iPhone has nothing on BBM! Yes I said it!
There are many IM apps for the iPhone, but they are just like any other IM so nothing too special! Cross platform, support many services but nothing special. There is nothing that compares to BBM!
WhatsApp has been a very successful cross platform IM service, but you have to share your phone number. Now you don’t want people knowing your phone number, you just want them for IM!
Another application to enter the market was LiveProfile (LP). This is similar to BBM in ways such as a LP Pin, and is a simple IM service. But it’s just not stable enough and is VERY VERY slow! It took off well, but people quickly lost interest as it was too slow, unresponsive and buggy. I dont know what happened with them, but I uninstalled it after a couple of days of use.
iPhone has an exclusive app, facetime. Video calling service for Apple to Apple. Only works over WiFi though. Sucks. It’s just a worse version of Skype I guess but for Apple devices only.
But for sure BBM wins here. BBM was the second biggest factor in me wanting a blackberry . . .the first being I WANTED A BLACKBERRY!
and for being totally awesome! BBM wins =)
and thus BlackBerry wins this one. Updated score: BlackBerry 3 – iPhone 2
Update: iPhone 4S with the recent iOS 5 update has now introduced the iMessage app (competition for BBM).