The growth of Blackberry Messenger from humble messaging app to a significant mobile communication platform has led to the need for social media integration . In interest of Blackberry app developers RIM recently announced that it would be opening the doors for certain BBM features so that App developers can integrate them readily into their apps . Most of the features if developed from scratch would take a long time to implement when compared to getting super app and BBM ready .
There are lots of advantages that BBM brings to BlackBerry software. BlackBerry Messenger’s social elements allow developers to build in social connectivity based on your pre-existing BBM contacts instead of having to develop and build social connections separately for each app. With 28 million users, there is also incredible word-of-thumb marketing potential when promoting your application.
Developers can also take advantage of BBM’s location-based services, as well as access the device’s video camera for video streaming.
- Invite other BBM users to download your app, or start a social interaction from within your app.
- Determine which of your BBM contacts has downloaded your app
- Access to BBM user profiles, including avatar, status, and location
- Add an application box to a user’s BBM profile that can display and broadcast achievements and updates
- Create BBM groups for your app
- Start embedded chats with BBM contact without leaving your app
- Sharing content with your BBM contacts
- Create sub-communities within your app, even if users are not each others’ contacts
- Allow social interactions within your sub-communities
- Stream data between users running your app, such as communication, multiplayer or turn-based gaming, and location
Sounds pretty good , but blackberry application developers need to wait for a few more months for the API’s being available in early 2011 . Meanwhile blackberry developers can register with RIM to receive updates and stay in touch with the new BBM social platform .
Below is the official press release of the BBM social platform
RIM Announces BBM Social Platform
Developers Will Be Able to Leverage the Power of Social Interactions within their Apps
San Francisco, CA – BlackBerry DEVCON 2010 – Research In Motion (RIM) (NASDAQ: RIMM; TSX: RIM) today announced the BBM™ (BlackBerry® Messenger) Social Platform, giving developers the tools to build applications that take advantage of the social aspects of the popular BBM service.
“The BlackBerry developer community has been eagerly awaiting the opportunity to integrate BlackBerry Messenger with their apps. BBM is a very popular service with over 28 million users and opening its real-time social connectivity to third party applications presents incredible opportunities,” said Alan Brenner, Senior Vice President, BlackBerry Platform at Research In Motion. “Access to BBM services from within apps will revolutionize gaming, enhance multimedia experiences, and add a new dimension to location based applications.”
Developers will be able to integrate various functions of the BBM service into their applications including chat capabilities, content sharing, and invitations. For example, users will be able to invite their BBM friends to join them in a game and then chat with one another while the game is being played.
Other BBM functionality accessible to developers through the BBM Social Platform includes:
• Contact list – allows users to choose from their BBM contacts from within another application in order to initiate social interactions such as chatting or initiating game play
• BBM user profile – an application can insert application status updates into the user’s BBM profile allowing it to be launched or downloaded from BBM by the user’s friends
• Application-specific communities – users can create BBM friend groups specific to an application
• Data Transfer – allows users to transfer pictures, audio, video and other content directly from an application to their BBM contacts or groups
• Invitations – allows users to invite new friends to BBM, invite their friends to interact within or download an application, and accept invitations, all from within an application
Through the BBM Social Platform, RIM is providing the BlackBerry developer community with the opportunity to leverage the power of BBM in their own applications in order to help drive loyalty to their applications through social and community interactions, as well as increase discoverability of their applications through peer communications and referrals.
Several BlackBerry® Alliance members are already testing the BBM Social Platform as part of an early access program.
“Kik is all about sharing, buying and experiencing music on a mobile platform, so integrating with BBM will deliver huge value to our users,” said Kik CEO Ted Livingston. “Kik users will be able to connect with friends and colleagues to discover and share music, the experience will be much more intimate through BBM.”
“With the new BBM Social Platform we will be able to build a ground breaking social eReading experience,” said Dan Liebu, Chief Technology Officer at Kobo. “We expect to increase engagement as Kobo users share their reading and shopping experiences in real-time.”
“The BBM Social Platform will allow us to bring innovative social features to our games that get friends playing together. Making social connections is a cornerstone to successful casual gaming, and with BBM integration, our fans will be able to easily connect with their friends to compete or cooperate,” said Nick Tremmaglia, Product Manager THK Live, Magmic Games
“The integration of BBM functionality into our leading sports app will be a game-changer for ScoreMobile,” says Benjie Levy, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer, Score Media Inc. “We expect that embedding key BBM features will deepen user engagement, lengthen visit sessions, and help virally grow ScoreMobile’s user base.”
“Telmap’s search, mapping and navigation solutions have been a huge success in recent years and have proven to be extremely popular with BlackBerry smartphone users. We are proud to be one of the first application developers to integrate with BBM, as we strongly believe that the combination of a community together with Telmap’s expert location capabilities and BBM’s best-in-class messaging solution, will result in a winning offering,” said Motti Kushnir, Telmap CMO.
The BBM Social Platform is expected to be available in the spring of 2011.
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