For months we've been hearing the rumors of Research In Motion, the maker of the BlackBerry, would be opening up the BlackBerry Messenger platform to other devices. Unfortunately for those users, there was disappointing news today as new CEO Thorsten Heins put a firm end to the rumors. In a conversation between the Wall Street Journal and a RIM employee, it was revealed that Mr. Heins said he'd decided that RIM shouldn't be pursuing licensing deals. It is likely a smart choice as one of the few remaining differentiating factors that RIM holds today is the strong user base of BlackBerry Messenger fans. Opening this feature to other devices could potentially erode the company's loyal customer base.
We're a bit bummed as we've been hearing from some users that they really want a mechanism to use a non-BlackBerry device to communicate with their BlackBerry friends. It'll be interesting to watch how this plays out and see if it helps them more than it hurts.