BlackBerry Messenger is closing down for consumers at the end of May

BlackBerry Key2
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Having once dominated instant messaging conversations across the planet, BlackBerry Messenger or BBM is closing down its consumer operations on May 31.

"The technology industry... is very fluid, and in spite of our substantial efforts, users have moved on to other platforms, while new users proved difficult to sign on," explains current developer Emtek in a blog post.

If you're still using BBM, you'll need to download any your photos, videos and other files you've shared before the service shuts down for good.

After May 31, the apps will no longer work and you won't be able to access your conversation histories. If you've got questions, Emtek has put up a FAQ.

Fond memories

"We are grateful for your support and wish to thank everyone, especially our users, partners, and employees, for being part of the BBM consumer service journey," says Emtek.

"We hope you will cherish many fond memories of BBM consumer service that helped shape messenger platforms to become what they are today."

And that's no exaggeration – BBM first appeared in 2005, way before any of the modern alternatives like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger had been invented. In the end though, the competition was too great.

If you still need a BBM fix, BlackBerry Limited (which retained the rights to the business version of BBM) has said that BBM Enterprise will be made available on iOS and Android for free for a year, with a $2.49-per-year subscription fee after that.

Via Gizmodo

David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.