Stop me if you've heard this one before. Reuters reports that the Rockstar consortium, a joint effort between Apple, Microsoft, Sony, and Blackberry, has sued Google and Android manufacturers Samsung, HTC, LG, ASUStek, Huawei, ZTE, and Pantech over patents formerly held by the now-defunct Nortel Networks. Rockstar won the patents in an auction in 2011 that topped out at $4.5 billion - Google lost the same auction with a $4.4 billion bid.
The BBM app might have made a real impact if it had arrived a few years ago, but it's not very impressive in today's Android ecosystem. However, the app is currently sitting at a very respectable 4.2 stars in Google Play. Good for BlackBerry, right? Well, maybe not. Starting on the first page there is a strange pattern of mostly 5-star reviews with identical or very similar wording. Something is fishy.
For many moons, Android users were crying out for a unified messaging solution, and Blackberry Messenger seemed like a good solution. As Android was starting to take off in late 2009, BlackBerry (at the time RIM) was already feeling pressure from the iPhone, so why not branch out and get users hooked on BBM? Perhaps management was in denial as the co-CEOs actively dismissed the clear trends in mobile around that time.
After a number of delays and an untold number of fake spam apps, BBM for Android is about to really arrive in Google Play. This will mark the first time Blackberry's premier messaging service has been available on a non-Blackberry device. You'll be able to download the app today, but you might not be able to actually use it.
BBM was leaked a few weeks back and the flood of users caused all manner of server issues for the company.
If you have been on the internet in the past couple of days, then you probably know that BBM for Android was supposed to hit the Play Store promptly at 7:00AM ET this morning. You probably also know that didn't happen, and the app still isn't available. Blackberry has now taken to its business blog to tell us exactly what's causing the hold up.
In short, the entire delay is caused by the leaked apk that recently surfaced online.
The day is finally coming, ladies and gentlemen. After more than four months since the announcement that Blackberry would be bringing its incredibly popular messaging service to Android (and iOS), we finally have a launch date. In an official blog post today, the recently-renamed company announced that the app would hit the Play Store on Saturday, September 21st promptly at 7:00 AM Eastern Time. We've been seeing more and more leaks of the app as of late, so this announcement isn't much of a surprise.
BlackBerry announced back in May that it would make BlackBerry Messenger available for both Android and iOS devices this summer. The clock is ticking, as the season will come to a close in a matter of weeks. BBM is not yet available in the Play Store, but a video of the beta version running on Android has hit the wild. This is a working mirror, as the video has been pulled from the original site.
This morning we were alerted to a possible Blackberry Messenger sighting in the Play Store, but upon closer inspection, it was immediately obvious that this app is beyond fake. The problem is it already has 100,000+ installs, it's been sitting in the Play Store since Friday, and Google hasn't done anything to remove the listing yet.
Update 6/23/13 4:25pm PT: The fake app has been taken down.
I can see three big problems that are currently distracting unsuspecting users and making them ignore any other possible warning signs:
- The developer's name is RIM, which looks pretty damn official.
We know Blackberry isn't the most popular name around here, but it is a name that continues to pop up at some interesting times. Developers, in particular, may remember when the company - then known as RIM - launched Playbook OS 2.0 with the ability to run specially packaged apps developed for Android 2.3.3. Since that time, events and promotions have been run to encourage developers to bring their apps to the platform, but the aging requirement to target Gingerbread has become a burden.
BlackBerry announced last month that its beloved BlackBerry Messenger service would be coming to Android. Although, the company didn't offer a date when BBM would be available. Don't tell T-Mobile UK any of your secrets, because it just let it slip on Twitter that the big day is June 27th.