BlackBerry made sure it touted its impressive BBM download numbers of 10 million in the messaging apps’ first 24 hours. Now the company is bragging about a new mark, and that’s 20 million users in a week on iOS and Android combined. And if you add in the folks who own BlackBerry smartphones, the company says BBM comes to 80 million monthly active users. Not even the most ardent critics of BlackBerry can argue against those kind of numbers.
However, numbers downloaded don’t necessarily translate into “active users,” but it does prove that people are interested in using the messaging pioneer. A prospect that’s been floated around a bit from BlackBerry execs — remember, most thought these guys were smoking something for believing this notion.
That said, without having a clue on how to monetize BBM, demand means nothing for a company fading from being relevant. Let’s be real here: BlackBerry’s BBM service is getting its ass kicked by other more popular messaging platforms. This is no one else’s fault but their own, as the company gave years of a head start to these companies out of their own stupidity.
The competition has hundreds of millions of monthly active users. The leader of the pack, WhatsApp, last week crossed the 350 million monthly active users milestone. They are miles ahead of BBM.
Yes, it would be cool if BBM succeeded. It wouldn’t be a bad thing, as most people would rather trust a company who’s handled secure and private messaging for over a decade.
But will it survive? We guess time will tell.