BlackBerry Messenger, or BBM, is a BlackBerry-exclusive application designed to provide your BlackBerry mobile device with enhanced instant-messaging capability. Instant messages are text messages that are sent and received instantly using your mobile device. BBM comes with a variety of features, including real-time message confirmations and a personalised BBM display picture. As of the date of this writing, most BlackBerry devices feature multiple messaging capabilities, such as push e-mail.
BBM provides you with real-time confirmation when an instant message is delivered and read. It also allows you to display songs you're listening to on the mobile device's music player and lets you add contacts by scanning another BlackBerry's bar code or entering its personal identification number. Unlike other instant-messaging applications, BBM supports an unlimited number of characters per message and enables you to share files, such as audio and photos, with multiple contacts simultaneously. If your BlackBerry isn't equipped with BBM, you can download it from the BlackBerry App World website.
BBM System Requirements
You must have a data service plan from your BlackBerry's wireless service provider for BBM to run properly. Your BlackBerry must also have at least 64 MB of memory and at least 2.4 MB of available memory. For BBM compatibility, your phone must be running the BlackBerry Device Software v4.5 or later. If your BlackBerry's on-board memory is insufficient to support BBM, you can install more memory into the device's built-in Secure Digital card slot, most likely a microSD card slot. SD cards come in a variety of capacities, such as 4 GB, 16 GB and 32 GB.
Other Messaging Features
Presently, most BlackBerry devices support photo, video, text and voice messages. You can send pictures and video captured by a BlackBerry using the phone's multimedia messaging service, or MMS, functionality. Some BlackBerry devices, such as the Curve 8900, are capable of geotagging, a process that embeds map and GPS coordinates into each picture taken by the phone. Geotagging is especially useful for finding out where you are and for returning to a precise location where a picture was taken.
Currently, most BlackBerry smartphones, such as the Bold 9780, support up to 10 mobile e-mail accounts through connections to an Internet Message Access Protocol (IMAP4) or Post Office Protocol (POP3) server. In addition to BBM, most BlackBerry phones support other instant-messaging clients, such as AOL, MSN and Yahoo! BlackBerry devices also support push e-mail, which instantly delivers e-mail directly to the phone and does not require the recipient to log in and manually check for new messages.
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