PSA: Consumer version of BBM closes today; get one year of BBMe for free
You can shed a tear if you'd like because a tweet from the official BBM Twitter account reminds us that today the consumer version of BlackBerry Messenger shuts down. As we told you when the date was announced last month, those using BBM can start using the enterprise version of BBM (BBMe) for 12 months without getting charged. After that period, users will have to pay $2.49 for six months if they want to continue with the service. The app must be downloaded first and it can be found in the Google Play Store and the Apple App Store.
The decision to shut down the consumer version of the messaging app was made by Emtek, an Indonesian based company that purchased that version of BBM back in 2016 for $207 million. BBMe is still run by BlackBerry and made a point of stating that it is under no contractual obligation to give former consumer BBM users a free year of BBMe. The company said that it is doing this out of respect for loyal BBM users.
BBM was launched in August 2005 as the first mobile-first messaging service and soon became the only reason that many purchased BlackBerry phones. But as the smartphone revolution gained ground, many new messaging apps were created such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Snapchat and WeChat; these soon soon overtook BBM in popularity everywhere but Indonesia where BBM still has a large following.