BlackBerry’s event of the season met with an unexpected, disheartening end over the weekend. The company was to rollout BlackBerry Messenger apps for both iOS and Android over the weekend but the procedure came to a screeching halt when the company started experiencing trouble during the rollout.
The BBM app was to rollout at about 4:30PM IST globally on Saturday on Android followed by local launches at 12:01AM across the world on iOS. However, the company kept delaying the launch of the Android version of the application and was unable to give a reason to the waiting users.
The official Twitter account for BBM too was cryptic in its communication and simply asked users to “hold tight” while it rolled out the Android version of the application. However, the wait kept getting longer for users, so much so that countries towards the east like Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia and Singapore ended up getting the app on iOS before the Android version came. Meanwhile, a huge chunk of Android users managed to catch hold of an unreleased version of BBM for Android and started to use the app installed via an APK.
Acknowledging that there were issues with the rollout, BlackBerry put up a blog post announcing that it was pausing the global rollout for both iOS and Android due to technical issues. “Prior to launching BBM for Android, an unreleased version of the BBM for Android app was posted online,” the post explained. “The interest and enthusiasm we have seen already – more than 1.1 million active users in the first 8 hours without even launching the official Android app – is incredible. Consequently, this unreleased version caused issues, which we have attempted to address throughout the day.”
The unreleased APK on Android ended up causing issues for BlackBerry, prompting the company to halt the launch of BBM. As it stands now, customers who already have BBM on iPhone will continue to be supported, while those with the unreleased version on Android will see their apps expire shortly. The company has asserted that it will keep users informed about when the rollout will resume.