The much anticipated release of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) for Android and iOS hit a roadblock on Saturday, with the company saying it is pausing the first ever rollout of the popular messaging app to third-party platforms.
Having announced that BlackBerry Messenger would be available for Android on Saturday and iPhone on Sunday, there was huge anticipation for the impending release of the application on Google's mobile platform on Saturday. However, that never materialised, as the official build of BlackBerry Messenger for Android never hit Google Play Store, though a leaked build was seen floating around.
This leaked build obviously got circulated quite a bit, with BlackBerry revealing over 1.1 million active users within 8 hours. The company blamed this leaked build for "issues", which it "attempted to address throughout the day".
While the iOS version of the app did hit Apple's App Store in some countries in the Eastern Hemisphere early hours of Sunday, BlackBerry has now paused further rollout of the app in other countries, and even pulled the app from countries it did release in.
Users who managed to install the iOS version of BlackBerry Messenger before it was pulled will be able to continue using the app. However, BlackBerry revealed it is disabling the leaked Android build, so anyone who got their hands on the unofficial build is out of luck.
BlackBerry did give an exact date on when BlackBerry Messenger for Android will be available again, but it did say that continued rollout for iOS and a 'staggered' rollout for Android will begin "as soon as we are able." Whether that means a couple of days, weeks, or months, is anyone's guess.
Here is BlackBerry's statement on the subject in full:
Prior to launching BBM for Android, an unreleased version of the BBM for Android app was posted online. 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.
Our teams continue to work around the clock to bring BBM to Android and iPhone, but only when it's ready and we know it will live up to your expectations of BBM. We are pausing the global roll-out of BBM for Android and iPhone. Customers who have already downloaded BBM for iPhone will be able to continue to use BBM. The unreleased Android app will be disabled, and customers who downloaded it should visit www.BBM.com to register for updates on official BBM for Android availability.
As soon as we are able, we will begin a staggered country roll-out of BBM for Android and continue the roll-out of BBM for iPhone. Please follow @BBM on Twitter for the latest updates and go to www.BBM.com to sign-up for updates about BBM for Android and iPhone. These issues have not impacted BBM service for BlackBerry.