Samsung announces BBM's arrival on Galaxy smartphones... in Africa

Samsung announces BBM's arrival on Galaxy smartphones... in AfricaWe know BlackBerry's planning on rolling out BBM to Android and iOS at some point over the third quarter (the beta's already out), and with time ticking on we were expecting some kind of official announcement to come sooner rather than later.

But we didn't expect this: Samsung has announced BBM will hit the Samsung App store and Google Play for Galaxy smartphones and seemingly all other Android users imminently... but only in Africa.

With BBM held up by many as the jewel in BlackBerry's software crown, all eyes are on how it performs when pitched against established rivals such as Whatsapp in the open market.

So the timing of when and how BlackBerry unleashes its messaging platform on Android and iOS users is key – or so we thought.

Which makes the news, from Samsung not BlackBerry, that BBM is going live to Galaxy users across Africa in the near future somewhat strange to say the least.

BBM will form part of Samsung Messaging Hub, Sammy's press release says, “as a complementary addition to the current slate of propriety and third party messaging services that Samsung customers enjoy”.

Access to the full BBM network will be included, namely BBM chats, multi-person chats and BBM Groups.

There is a certain logic to prioritising Africa given how strong both BlackBerry and BBM are in particularly South Africa, yet considering the rollout of BBM to other platforms was always going to be reported internationally no matter where it was chosen to take place, the fact that Samsung has taken the lead on the PR doesn't make a whole lot of sense.

Especially when the fact that its availability on Google Play means the rollout isn't just for Samsung Galaxy users but appears to be Android-wide.

Has Samsung jumped the gun in promoting BBM for its phones while it's still officially labelled as “Coming Soon”? It surely wasn't BlackBerry's idea, and you can't imagine other Android OEMs being overly pleased that BBM's wider rollout has seemingly been Samsung-ised.

For now, we'll happily admit to being just a little confused by the whole thing.

Via N4BB

Read more about: AndroidBlackBerry 10

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JanSt / MOD  Aug. 7, 2013 at 11:10

I love it - "only in Africa"... Thank the lord it's the 21st century and Euro-centrism is no longer an issue. <= see that? That is "only Africa" ;) You can fit India, China, the USA, Europe, Japan and something called "only the UK" into Africa... Of course you'd need to paint all those people black.

Stelph  Aug. 7, 2013 at 16:49

Good lord, that and the image of where the majority of people in the world live within a circle on the globe (below) are pretty mind blowing

JanSt / MOD  Aug. 7, 2013 at 17:24

holy cow.

I read in an article some time ago that you could fit the world's population into texas...


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