BlackBerry group on Thursday announced that it will be shutting down its BlackBerry Messenger consumer service on 31 May 2019.
“Today we’re announcing that we will be closing BBM consumer service on 31 May 2019,” BBM said in a blog post on its website.
The proprietary mobile instant messenger and video telephony application said it is shutting down because “users have moved on to other platforms, while new users proved difficult to sign on.”
“Though we are sad to say goodbye, the time has come to sunset the BBM consumer service, and for us to move on,” it added.
Blackberry had in 2018 shut down the Blackberry Playbook Video service.
BBM was very popular in the early 2000s. But the coming of WhatsApp and other instant messaging applications such as Telegram, WeChat and Facebook Messanger saw its popularity fade out.
Back in 2016, BlackBerry announced a new partnership with Indonesia-based Emtek to help expand the consumer BBM business.
As part of the partnership, Emtek expanded the capabilities of BBM for consumers with new features and enhancements while BlackBerry maintained control over their BBM Enterprise solution.
“Three years ago, we set out to reinvigorate BBM consumer service, one of the most loved instant messaging applications, as a cross-platform service where users can not only chat and share life experiences, but also consume content and use payment services,” Blackberry said.
“We poured our hearts into making this a reality, and we are proud of what we have built to date.”
Blackberry said users’ data such as photos, videos and files will be available for download before the app is shut down at the end of May.
“Once the BBM service is shut down, you will not be able to open BBM on your device to see any old or new messages, or retrieve asset files,” it said.