If you frequent switching platforms (BlackBerry 10, Android, iOS) while using BBM, there's a good chance you might run into issues in the future that can cause loss of contacts, groups, and channels. Over the past few days, folks have been reporting multiple issues when switching BBM across platforms ranging from temporary server problems to contacts, groups, and channels no longer being accessible after the move.
For most folks, the temporary server issue is something that has popped up in the past and eventually went away, but this time around, things are different as it has now been confirmed there have been changes to how BBM moves your BBID across platforms, and well, they're certainly not for the better if you frequent switching back to BlackBerry 10 from any of the other BBM supported platforms.
We have recently completed changes that prevent users from switching their accounts from an Android, iOS, or Microsoft device to a BlackBerry 10 or BlackBerry OS device. Also, in addition, BBM Enterprise users will no longer be able to switch their BBM Enterprise account to a BBM consumer account on an Android, iOS, or Microsoft device." – BBM Product Management.
To be clear, you can move your BBM between BlackBerry 10 devices perfectly fine, but if you move to an Android, iOS, or a Microsoft device, your BBM will technically become 'stuck' there. I'm not sure who thought this up or figured it would be a good idea between BlackBerry and Emtek who now runs consumer BBM for BlackBerry, but it's certainly not the best route to take at all, especially considering since there was never an announcement made or update made to the BlackBerry Knowledge Base that would allow folks to be prepared for the change.
Unless this gets changed, the only real suggestion that can be made if you switch devices often would be to create a new BBID for your new device and leave whatever BBID is associated with your BlackBerry 10 devices on those BlackBerry 10 devices. I know I have been harping on BBM a bit lately, but this. This is just a stupid decision. This is the kind of stuff that convinces people to NOT use BBM. Tell @BBM to fix it.
Alex Thurber has now posted an update to the Inside BlackBerry Blog explaining the changes that were made to BBM and why they were made.
BBM – What Changed This Week and Why
First, to our very loyal users we are sorry for any confusion this week. Thank you for being patient and allowing us to set the record straight on the details and user impact necessitated by the coming split of BBM into three separate services: BBM Enterprise for all devices; BBM Consumer for BBOS and BB10; and BBM Consumer for Android, iOS and Microsoft devices.
Why We Are Making Changes: For several years, BBM has been serving two very distinct and different audiences: enterprise customers, many of whom require military-grade security for their text, voice and video conversations; and consumer users interested in a free service that offers sticky features like games, shopping, music, news, payments and more.
Today, BlackBerry is a cybersecurity leader offering enterprises a complete range of software and services that comprehensively protect mission-critical data, networks and communications. Because BBM is also serving the personal needs of millions of users globally, we recognized the need for a strategic partner who is focused on delivering a rich set of consumer features and services on top of the secure platform we have built.
What has changed: On August 29, 2017, BlackBerry began the migration process that will allow our strategic partner, Emtek, to license and operate the BBM Consumer service for Android, iOS and Microsoft devices while BlackBerry will own and continue operating the BBM Enterprise service for all platforms along with the BBM Consumer service for all BB10 and BBOS devices. The distinction between devices is important from a legal standpoint because BlackBerry cannot transfer the BBM user data associated with any BBM enterprise account, nor any BBM Consumer account for BB10 and BBOS devices to Emtek.
To be clear, regardless of your device and which BBM service you use, everyone will continue to be able to add and message their BBM contacts no matter what BBM service or device they have. That has not changed. It should also be noted that these changes impact a small number of BBM users.
BBM Enterprise users: The only change is that you can no longer migrate your BBM Enterprise account to a BBM Consumer account for Android, iOS and Microsoft devices using your existing BBID. It is also useful to point out that a unique and helpful feature coming soon for BBM Enterprise is Multiple Points of Presence (MPoP) which will allow you to have BBM Enterprise securely running on all your devices simultaneously using the same BBID.
BBM Consumer users on BB10 and BBOS: You can currently switch to an Android, iOS or Microsoft device using your existing BBID while maintaining all your contacts; however, you can no longer switch back to your BB10 or BBOS device using the same BBID. Also, beginning September 25, 2017 you will no longer be able to switch to an Android, iOS or Microsoft device using your existing BBID. You can continue to switch between BBOS and BB10 devices seamlessly using your existing BBID after September 25, but switching to an Android, iOS or Microsoft device following this date will require that you establish a new BBID and re-invite your contacts to this new BBM Consumer account.
BBM Consumer users on Android, iOS and Microsoft devices: You can continue using the same BBID and seamlessly switch between any Android, iOS and Microsoft device. However you can no longer switch – using the same BBID – to a BB10 or BBOS device. To use BBM Consumer on a BB10 or BBOS device you will need to establish a new BBID and re-invite your contacts to this new BBM Consumer account.
For support in setting up a new BBID click here
With the separation of the services soon to be complete, we are confident that users of both BBM Enterprise and BBM Consumer will find a significantly improved experience that includes the most secure messaging platform for enterprises anywhere along with the rich set of features that we know consumers appreciate. Thank you again for your loyalty.