Since struggling BlackBerry opted to untether their BlackBerry Messenger service from their own phones, the app has gone on to be featured on both the Android and iOS Stores. Windows Phone users were initially left out, but for many, it wasn’t that big of a problem considering the popularity and availability of alternatives such as WhatsApp, Skype and Viber to name a few. Regardless, BlackBerry have been working on bringing their messenger service to our beloved mobile platform first as a limited beta release, followed by a public, stable offering.
Both versions are currently being updated by the company and today, BBM Beta got updated to version 1.2, which brings a host of new features. Starting with the improvements, the notifications system of the app will now display part of the message received in the toast notification and the Action Center. Additionally, the number of unread messages displayed in a notification will now be of the number of new chats rather than the number of total new messages.
As for the new features, version 1.2 introduces the ability to see a full screen of suggestions for people you may know during the initial setup process, making it easier to find friends already using BBM. There have also been UI improvements to make groups stand out more in the contacts list, as well as the ability to quickly move contacts into different categories using a long press. New emoticons have also been introduced to make sure you get your feelings across quick and easy.
BlackBerry have also been paying close attention to user feedback, fixing a host of bugs and crashes that were noticed by users of the Beta program. The company seems very committed to ensure the app is running as smoothly as possible. However, there are still a number of known issues that are yet to be fixed, but at least the company known about them so we can expect them to get fixed in the next beta release or two.
Those of you using the stable release should see their app get updated in the near future as soon as BlackBerry irons out any issues and bugs from the Beta. So in the meantime, you can head over to the download link below to get your hands on the latest release of BBM.