Last year we heard one of the most intriguing rumors in recent RIM history. It contended that RIM would eventually develop BlackBerry Messenger for the iOS and Android platforms. We saw various analyses and opinions follow, but, unsurprisingly, nothing came of it. A recent news item is sure to rev up that engine again. RIM is now seeking an iOS developer “capable of architecting, designing, developing and testing complex applications for iPhone and iPad devices.” (Via All Things D.) Might it finally be time for RIM to release BBM on the iPhone? Clearly that’s one possibility. Look, we all want RIM to succeed. There’s reason to believe that they will release a competitive product with BlackBerry 10. The problem is that they’re re-entering a mobile market that has two clear-cut frontrunners. Both Android and iPhone have made their claims, and it will take something big, something remarkable, to make a significant dent in their market share. While BlackBerry 10 will likely rival these platforms in terms of usability, they’ll need much more than that to catch up. RIM could concede, then, that Apple will, for the foreseeable future, rule the mobile market. Wouldn’t it make sense, then, for them to get their flagship product out to many more users — users who wouldn’t think to consider the BlackBerry? Think about it this way: BBM is more than just an internal BlackBerry messaging system. I is a potential marketing device for RIM. Show iPhone users that you can do something better than anyone else, and maybe, just maybe, they’ll consider switching to your platform eventually. It’s a risky move for sure. iOS users could see BBM available on their iPhones and think, “why switch?” Worse, BlackBerry users could see BBM on iPhone and make the switch themselves. But RIM needs a big move. They need something more powerful than a useful phone to recapture the mobile market. Perhaps creating BBM for iPhone is just that answer. Or maybe they’re going for something else entirely with this iOS developer position.
Is this a sign of BBM on iOS?
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