While the West coast prepares for Google I/O, which is set to kick off tomorrow, the East coast is hosting BlackBerry Live in Orlando, Florida. The conference commenced today and will continue through until Thursday but already there has been some key announcements.
Probably the biggest of these is that BlackBerry today confirmed that, come the summertime, Android and iOS users will be able to download BlackBerry's BBM for free. The application will be available for iOS6 and Android 4.0 and higher and will allow users to chat (one-on-one or group chats), as well as send photos, and voice notes.
"For BlackBerry, messaging and collaboration are inseparable from the mobile experience, and the time is definitely right for BBM to become a multi-platform mobile service," said Andrew Bocking, Executive Vice President, Software Product Management and Ecosystem, at BlackBerry.
"BBM has always been one of the most engaging services for BlackBerry customers, enabling them to easily connect while maintaining a valued level of personal privacy. We're excited to offer iOS and Android users the possibility to join the BBM community."
Of course, these applications are subject to approval from the App Store and the Google Play Store, so it's not guaranteed yet. For example, Apple could very well reject BBM for replicating the function of iMessage. Still, we'll wait to see what happens when the summer rolls around.