Recent BBM update gives you free privacy and control features


In a recent post, BlackBerry has announced that all the privacy and control features within its BBM messaging app are completely free to use. Now, coupled with other features, BBM users on Android, iOS, and BlackBerry devices will also have unlimited access to use the Retract and Timer – which was only available as part of a BBM subscription.

BlackBerry first launched its Retract and Timer features within the BBM app in 2014, although these features were free to use initially, the Canadian company later placed a $1 monthly premium subscription plan for it. The “Retract” feature, enables users to remove text or photos from a message already sent so they are no longer visible to the receiver (great feature especially if you sent the message mistakenly), while the Timer, gives users control over how long their contacts can view shared messages, images, or location information.

Building on the renowned immediacy, reliability and security inherent to BBM, the new release provides unmatched level of privacy and control to BBM users without any subscription fees

Matthew Talbot
SVP, BBM at BlackBerry

“Keeping control over the messages and content that they share, BBM users can be ensured that what they share is always theirs to control.”

Formerly a key player in the smartphone industry, the reverse seems to be the case now for the Canadian company, slowly it has been moving away from its own operating system, to embrace one of the dominant forces in the smartphone world – Android.

Other chat apps such as WhatsApp recently passed one billion monthly active users, Facebook Messenger topped 800 million users, while Telegram went past 100 million users. Could it be that BlackBerry is pushing for more users in its chat app by enabling more privacy and control features to everyone for free? It sure needs that though, there are lots of messaging apps out there, even though BBM have lots of dedicated users, it still needs to bring up creative methods of keeping them interested.

Here are other newly added features on BBM provided by BlackBerry:

Cross-Platform (Android, iOS & BlackBerry 10)

  • In addition to Retract and Timer, users also have access to the Private Chat and Edit features. The former removes names and avatars from the chat window, while the latter allows you to edit messages you’ve sent to a contact
  • Forward messages from one chat to another
  • General performance improvements and bug fixes


  • Mute notifications for multi-person chats
  • Scroll through all pictures shared within a 1:1 or multi-person chat
  • Android 6.0 (Marshmallow) support
  • Improved BBM Voice call quality
  • Option for users to save pictures taken during BBM chat to device


  • Enhanced look and feel for the chat screen
  • Capture and share larger videos with enhanced video sharing
  • Multi-select mode: delete, retract, or forward multiple messages at once
  • Improved BBM Voice call quality
  • Option for users to save pictures taken during BBM chat to device

BlackBerry 10

  • Delete messages from just your view of the chat
  • Retract and edit messages in group chats
  • Option to retract all messages in a chat when it ends

Please note that while the update is launched, it may take 24 hours or more to appear in the app store depending on your mobile platform or region.

BBM (BlackBerry Messanger), is a proprietary Internet-based instant messenger and videotelephony application included on BlackBerry devices that allows messaging and voice calls between BlackBerry, iOS, Windows Phone and Android users. It is developed by BlackBerry Limited (formerly known as Research In Motion Limited (RIM)) and was first released in August 2005.

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