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  1. thedark722's Avatar
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    Default BBM crossplatform - Benefit or hinderance to BB10?...

    Just curious to hear The Nation's feelings of BBM going cross-platform. Its a bit of a mixed bag for me. For me, BBM is a definitive differentiator for the BB platform. It's somewhat unique in its execution and quality (not so much in nature as there are a bazillion cross-platform IM apps). It's definitely one of the things keeping me interested in Blackberry, and from a business perspective, it's an essential tool, especially now with voice-chat support and the coming video-chat support all but confirmed in BB10. That being said though, on a personal level, my list of contacts is steady dwindling down to nothing, I still use it in my personal life but only because of its support for text messaging contacts. I love the UX on BBM and will continue to use it as my go-to text app.

    I find myself wondering if it would help or hurt BB10 adoption if it went cross platform. Would it really reduce the incentive of adoption if no-one is on it anyway, or will it draw more users on other platforms and therefore support the BB10 platform as a whole? IMO, in the past, BBM was a major piece of BBOS's one big differentiator - its strength as a messaging tool. From a consumer perspective, giving it up as unique to the BBOS would have been a bad move. With all the issues and problems (whether real or perceived) of the legacy OS, BB would have had an even harder time keeping the users it did keep for as long as it did. I appreciate that BB10 has so much more to offer than just BBM. I think BB10 should be given a chance to establish itself and stand on it's own merits behind the strength of it's unique proposition, but once established, I think taking BBM cross platform could be beneficial to the overall positioning. BB10, with the improved value proposition it presents, no longer has to rely solely on the strength of its messaging capabilities, but rather stands strong with its overall ability to empower users to get s#!t done. I think that taking it to other os's could be a good idea, but probably not ahead or immediately after the BB10 launch. Now, how they would do that is a whole other discussion...licensing fees, etc....not going to get into that...

    I'm a huge supporter of BB and firmly believe in the future of the BB10 platform (already reserved on Rogers and will be taking the big step of carrying a second phone - in addition to my work phone - just to get in on the experience). .

    I'm curious to hear people's thoughts and speculations on how the idea of cross platform BBM would effect BB10 and its adoption outside of the Faithful.

    thanks.
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  2. Bilaal's Avatar
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    It would have been an issue in the past because BBOS didn't offer much in the consumers' eyes in terms of apps and appeal in general. With BBM going cross platform with the number of advantages it has over any other messaging tool and if the Desktop rumours are true also, I think it's not a bad thing at all. Given that BB10 will now offer a whole lot more than before, I reckon it'll do RIM some good in the future.

    In the short term however, the people that once migrated over to iOS and Android will say "What's the point in going back when I have everything on my Android, including BBM", but if BB10 is what it's all coked up to be, I can see some people coming back.
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  3. Villain's Avatar
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    maybe a watered down version on the other platforms and a monthly subscription fee.


    RIM really shouldn't be doing anything that could make them completely irrelevant.
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  4. ibpluto's Avatar
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    I think it can only help at this stage. So often what keep people away from one device is because it can't communicate with another. Case in point, BBM is crucial for me because the people I care about use BB's. The same thing holds true vise Vera with other platforms (ie, colleague of mine is hooked on face time because all the folks he cares about have apple products). Because BB is the low guy on the totem pole for market share, you need to remove one obstacle and that is allow people from other platforms to interact with the BB using something other than SMS. That means you either bring in other tools (ie Skype, whatsapp....etc) or go on the offense and put BBM out there for download. Make it free, but keep it watered down somewhat (not too much so however ), making BBM on a BB the best way to experience it, but keeping it open to entice other platform users.

    Just my $0.02
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  5. Skeevecr's Avatar
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    Going cross-platform on the mobile side would be stupid for them right now, beyond the obvious point that they are probably far too busy anyway, if it is a feature that people consider when comparing devices then why would you remove it as a differentiator just as you want people to be buying your hardware.

    Where it could be beneficial would be a desktop client as this would draw people back to using bbm who had stopped, bringing them closer to a bb10 handset and it would also provide an additional option for your bb users too.
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  6. jagrlover's Avatar
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    My hunch is that something big is brewing. With all the rumours of BBM Desktop, BBM Video, BBM Voice working without a SIM, new service revenue models, I'm hoping that it goes truly cross platform with a service that rivals Skype. Now that would be awesome.
    bbecause it's bbetter
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  7. bhrgvr's Avatar
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    Default BBM crossplatform - Benefit or hinderance to BB10?...

    I think RIM should wait a bit before making it cross platform. Wait and see how bb10 is doing as an OS and if it is doing so so then launch bbm as a fee based service... Let RIM make some money...

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  8. lnichols's Avatar
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    As long as the Blackberry version is free and more feature rich than the other versions, and the other version have to pay to use (either by ads or fees), then I'm softening my stance on this. I was dead against it but now I'm not sure. I don't think it would help RIM much, I'm not sure if it would hurt them by people just getting BBM on their iPhone or Android instead of coming back to BB. Definitely shouldn't do it or announce at release of BB10 as it could keep some people from switching that may be looking to, but maybe in summer or something.
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  9. Concession's Avatar
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    Not much point in a messaging platform where you can't talk to most people.

    BBM can be so much more than just a marketing gimmick for blackberry phones. It can be its own mega business for RIM if they want it to be.
  10. Rayysai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Concession View Post
    Not much point in a messaging platform where you can't talk to most people.

    BBM can be so much more than just a marketing gimmick for blackberry phones. It can be its own mega business for RIM if they want it to be.
    This is the truth of the matter. RIM's been sitting on what could become their biggest cash cow but they're just not utilizing it to its fullest. I have friends on iPhone and Android that said they'd pay $10/year to get a fully featured BBM on their phone. This is just another source of income for RIM. If not, then I'm still a fan of providing a less featured version of BBM for free on other platforms and if they want the full features they'll move on over to BB (or pay $10/year as it were)
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    Let's take the security and connectivity of the BlackBerry Platform, BB10 and BB10 and extend it to other BlackBerry form factors and embedded devices that run QNX and BlackBerry 10.
    That's the best "cross-platform" option, instead of releasing products in someone else's backyard. They can always kick you off their lawn or financially drain you in court.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayysai View Post
    This is the truth of the matter. RIM's been sitting on what could become their biggest cash cow but they're just not utilizing it to its fullest. I have friends on iPhone and Android that said they'd pay $10/year to get a fully featured BBM on their phone. This is just another source of income for RIM. If not, then I'm still a fan of providing a less featured version of BBM for free on other platforms and if they want the full features they'll move on over to BB (or pay $10/year as it were)
    Virtually no one would pay 10 a year for this as there are plenty of free alternatives. Even 5 is unrealistic and even with 100 million subscribers paying that its not that much revenue for a company that generates 10 billion + sales a year. This is why it wont happen. The downside is too high and the potential gain is not large.
  13. Jtaylor1986's Avatar
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    The only cross platform that might work is windows desktop and mac because Blackberry does not directly compete in this space.
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  14. dakken's Avatar
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    I think a free full featured would be nice,,,but only capable of messaging actuall BB phones. No BBming from android to apple or to windows phones. That way when they get hooked they have to get a BB to message all platforms.
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    Default BBM crossplatform - Benefit or hinderance to BB10?...

    Keeping it to messaging only bb from another platform is counterproductive... You are effectively leaving out millions of subscribers to get them on this platform... I think RIM should bring in a $5 fee / year to get them on this secure platform.


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  16. Cappyshirt's Avatar
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    my opinion. I think it can really benefit RIM. Why? I'll tell you.

    BBM is going to be a lot different on BB10, it'll put more focus on 'Social Integration' and adopt a lot of features offered by competitors like; Skype, Facebook Messenger and Whatsapp.

    We should expect BBM to be an all new social platform, to compete in this day of age. Why? because we're living in a new age where apps compete better when there on other mobile platforms. Look at Google for example, Yes, there's a lot of exclusive apps that you can get on android. But, look at some of the Top apps in the apple app store; youtube, google maps and gmail are in the top ten. Accompanied by Facebook, Facebook messenger, Facebook poke and Instagram all in the top ten. It's a Facebook and Google world in the Apple app store.

    Other companies recognize this, Microsoft wants to make a huge push for Skype and have it as intergrated into WP8 as BBM will be for BB10 and than they'll push Skype on to other platforms. So why shouldn't BBM do the same?

    To say that RIM would lose money and push people away from Blackberry is not true and easy to say.

    Honestly, RIM could either release a crossplatform BBM that's, secure, free and full-featured and eat up all the market share that Whatapps, Facebook Messenger and Skype are competing for or not. Either way won't ruin BBM or take away from it being an awesome service.

    that's my 0.03 cents
  17. #17  

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    Quote Originally Posted by Rayysai View Post
    I have friends on iPhone and Android that said they'd pay $10/year to get a fully featured BBM on their phone. This is just another source of income for RIM. If not, then I'm still a fan of providing a less featured version of BBM for free on other platforms and if they want the full features they'll move on over to BB (or pay $10/year as it were)
    I look at it from a slightly different perspective. On current estimates with a 2 year contract an average BlackBerry user will generate something like $200 in hardware markup, plus (24*monthly fee). For rounding purposes let's call that $150/year into RIM's coffers which would be missed by allowing that user to use competing hardware. To that you should add the proportionate infrastructure enhancement cost for supporting n-million extra users, with the added liability of for bandwidth-hungry video calling and the overhead of trying to collect the revenue. And your cheapskate friends think $10/year would balance that reduced revenue?
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  18. jdevenberg's Avatar
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    I think it is good for them. I want a great messaging service with things like video chat and delivered and read notifications, but want to be able to use it with other people, so iOS was appealing to me. If BBM goes cross platform, it will give me one more reason to go with BB (which is the platform I'd most like to try next) for my next phone.
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    I was listening to a podcast today that was mentioning that Facebook is trying phone calls via VOIP in Canada on their Messenger app. The podcast called it "BBM replacement" saying you get very similar experience from FB Messenger (you can see when the other party is writing, reading your message - I understand - I am not a big Facebook user). Has anyone in Canada actually tried this and how does it compare to the BBM Voice experience? I just ask because if this is something Facebook is going to get heavily into, that would be powerful competition to a cross platform BBM and would limit RIM's ability to charge for it IMHO, if the experience is even close, considering the user base with FaceBook, if its anything close to what they say it is.
  20. Cappyshirt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Branta View Post
    For rounding purposes let's call that $150/year into RIM's coffers which would be missed by allowing that user to use competing hardware.
    But is RIM actually loosing user for allowing cross-platform? I'm using a blackberry 9700 and I can't even use BBM. But, Still like it better than my last laggy/crash-on-me Android I had.

    IMO I think this math equation only works if BBM is the Sole reason keeping people/making people use Blackberries.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cappyshirt View Post
    But is RIM actually loosing user for allowing cross-platform? I'm using a blackberry 9700 and I can't even use BBM. But, Still like it better than my last laggy/crash-on-me Android I had.
    Each user decamping or not gained is a loss of revenue.

    IMO I think this math equation only works if BBM is the Sole reason keeping people/making people use Blackberries.
    ISTM it applies for each reduction or non-increase in the BB-BBM user headcount, regardless of the reason.
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    Quote Originally Posted by randall2580 View Post
    I was listening to a podcast today that was mentioning that Facebook is trying phone calls via VOIP in Canada on their Messenger app. The podcast called it "BBM replacement" saying you get very similar experience from FB Messenger (you can see when the other party is writing, reading your message - I understand - I am not a big Facebook user). Has anyone in Canada actually tried this and how does it compare to the BBM Voice experience? I just ask because if this is something Facebook is going to get heavily into, that would be powerful competition to a cross platform BBM and would limit RIM's ability to charge for it IMHO, if the experience is even close, considering the user base with FaceBook, if its anything close to what they say it is.
    Someone correct me if I'm wrong, but I think Facebook's new service is sending voice notes, not having 2-way conversations like BBM voice.
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  23. Cappyshirt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Branta View Post
    ISTM it applies for each reduction or non-increase in the BB-BBM user headcount, regardless of the reason.
    Truth. But, what happens when you flip the coin. Couldn't you increase your headcount and profit by having your platform more widely available, even if it was marketed as a premium product for per say 'Businessman' for secure conversation, video-chat, and VOIP on Desktop or Mobile creating or taking over a Niche Skype has?

    All-in-all I believe there is a Market out there for a cross-platform all-in-one messaging service. How they provide and market it depends whether its profitable or not.

    Maybe they could release it under a different name, with less features but interacts with BBM. BlackBerry talk anyone?
  24. aha
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    Ask yourself the following question:

    1. Was BBM the factor kept you from jumping ship to other platforms?
    2. Did BBM attract anyone jumping ship to BB platform?
    3. Would you jump ship now if BBM is available on other platform?
    4. Would the majority of what's app users or skype users jump ship to use BBM as their main messaging platform if BBM is available on ios an android platform today?

    The answers for me are NO, NO, NO, not likely.

    That's why I believe BBM is insignificant in the equations for people to decide which platform to go.
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    Cross platform BBM is a must for the success of the product going forward. I have a BB7 device and only use BBM with 1 contact because no one else uses it.

    This has been discussed before with Apple. They made iTunes available to windows as well as the iPod etc. Guess what happened? People started using (and liking) Apple products and they started buying Macs.

    The same could happen with BBM. Staying power in this incredibly competitive market is essential. What does Google have? They have search. Andriod benefits from the ubiquitous nature of GOogle Search.
    Apple has iTunes, which keeps Apple relevant.

    Microsoft has Windows.

    The fact is, RIM needs a product that people who are not Blackberry people will still use. It keeps the mind share.

    For me, BBM without crossplatform compatibility is useless anyway.

    As for how to profit from it, the best way is to sell it to the other OEMs. Forget charging $10 a year to consumers.
    Get samsung to pay a few cents on every Andriod phone they sell and to integrate it into their UI and you have a recipe for huge adoption. If it catches on, then all of the Andriod makers would want to have it to be competitive. Make it a very small cost per handset and of course also make it available to purchase for users of handsets that don't have it.

    Using a RIM product is an advertisement of mindshare every time someone uses the app.
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