BlackBerry testing sponsored invites, channel ads in BBM

BlackBerry testing sponsored invites, channel ads in BBM

The ads are coming!

Now that BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) has successfully made the leap from its home turf to iPhone and Android, what's next? Judging from the latest Beta Zone version of the app, it appears to be advertising.

BerryReview managed to get a peek at the latest Beta Zone update for the Android version of BlackBerry Messenger and tucked away inside the release notes is an entire section devoted to a new "Ad Experience" the company appears to be toying with.

Although users of release versions of BBM are safe for now, there's likely no escaping the fact that ads will eventually turn up there, especially now that BlackBerry Chief Executive Officer John Chen has made it clear the company intends to "monetize" the platform.

For now, that experience appears to be limited to two sections of the BBM Beta Zone app: Sponsored invitations in the Invites section, and sponsored channel posts in the Updates section.

Message from your sponsor

BlackBerry's description of the Ads Experience immediately brings to mind Twitter's Promoted Tweets, relatively harmless paid ads that pop up in a user's timeline on the microblogging service's website and official mobile apps.

The BBM Beta Zone release notes also mention "ads may not appear right away" for all users, stressing that ads will only appear in the latest beta version, at least for now.

Ironically, the pitch for ads is perched atop a handful of actual improvements to the Beta Zone app, which include increasing the size of attachments from 6MB to 16MB, sharing pictures in a multi-person chat and viewing BBM images in both portrait and landscape orientation.

Last but not least, the most recent Beta Zone app allows BBM users to purchase stickers from the new BBM Store, but we're not sure if that should be considered an improvement or another distraction from the app's core functionality.

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Source : techradar[dot]com

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