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BlackBerry to monetize BBM via money transfers, channels, virtual goods

  • "Because we are by nature private and secure and reliable and regulatory compliant, we are ideally suited to bring value in mobile money and financial services," says BBM exec  David Proulx. BlackBerry (BBRY +0.9%) has begun trialing a person-to-person BBM money transfer service in Indonesia, and expects to add more countries/services in 2014.
  • BBM, which now has 85M+ MAUs, will also be monetized via sponsored channels for brands looking to reach out to consumers (BlackBerry introduced BBM Channels last year), and the sale of stickers and other virtual goods through a new BBM store (due to arrive this week through a software update).
  • Rival messaging platforms such as Naver's Line and Tencent's WeChat are already being monetized via stickers and/or payments. Some platforms are also eying mobile gaming as a revenue stream.
  • On the other hand, market leader WhatsApp is still taking a minimalist approach, monetizing its service only by setting a $0.99/year subscription fee for certain markets.
  • Previous: Tango receives funding at $1.1B valuation
Comments (38)
  • Cliff Hilton
    , contributor
    Comments (1499) | Send Message
     
    Very solid direction.
    25 Mar, 10:37 AM Reply Like
  • contrarianwise
    , contributor
    Comments (1039) | Send Message
     
    the party has just begun...slow and easy
    25 Mar, 09:01 PM Reply Like
  • KIA Investment Research
    , contributor
    Comments (7997) | Send Message
     
    Looks like BlackBerry is resurrecting old news in order to prop up the share price in anticipation of Friday's bad news.

     

    Think I'm kidding?
    Here's another bit of old news release by BlackBerry today :\

     

    BlackBerry's enterprise offering wins U.S. security clearance http://reut.rs/P3a1Lr
    26 Mar, 08:03 PM Reply Like
  • LYogi
    , contributor
    Comments (2015) | Send Message
     
    Is the news that they are authorized to also now manage iOS and Android or has that always been the case?

     

    "BlackBerry Ltd has received a coveted security clearance that paves the way for U.S. government agencies to use its systems to manage and secure Android- and iOS-powered devices operating on their internal networks"
    26 Mar, 08:05 PM Reply Like
  • KIA Investment Research
    , contributor
    Comments (7997) | Send Message
     
    But I think the party's going on at Apple

     

    BlackBerry sued software chief to stop him leaving for Apple http://bit.ly/1dOO9cP

     

    "BlackBerry Ltd. sued one of its top executives to stop him from jumping ship and joining Apple, keeping him stuck at the smartphone maker until June, court documents show."

     

    Definitely a morale builder.
    26 Mar, 08:08 PM Reply Like
  • Energysystems
    , contributor
    Comments (1012) | Send Message
     
    Late to the party, and most have already moved onto other platforms.
    25 Mar, 10:42 AM Reply Like
  • ELLAS
    , contributor
    Comments (1529) | Send Message
     
    Late to the party? Better late than never. And having the most secure messaging platform is a plus.
    25 Mar, 11:08 AM Reply Like
  • gchaput
    , contributor
    Comments (118) | Send Message
     
    Not late, they are leading in the subject announced above.
    25 Mar, 11:36 AM Reply Like
  • Crispin_in_Waterloo
    , contributor
    Comments (1057) | Send Message
     
    @Energy...

     

    It seems many are moving to BBM. Nearly everyone I know with a non-BB device has installed BBM.

     

    Now that secure money transfers wuill be available, who do you think they're gonna trust?
    25 Mar, 10:46 AM Reply Like
  • Energysystems
    , contributor
    Comments (1012) | Send Message
     
    A lot of my friends installed it on non-BB devices, only to stop using it within a month or so. Before being available to other platforms, it had 60M users(according to BBRY disclosure). 85M doesn't seem like screaming growth to me, especially with the cross-platform availability. fwiw, there are many options for secure money transfers.

     

    Blackberry hasn't had a "winner" in a very long time. They're late to the party in this aspect of money transfers/payments.
    25 Mar, 11:01 AM Reply Like
  • TGP59
    , contributor
    Comments (70) | Send Message
     
    I'm going to keep trusting Paypal, thanks. Also FYI, BBM is currently ranked 56th on the top chart for free social networking apps on Apple's store, well behind FB Messenger(1), Kik Messenger(3), WhatsApp(5), Line(9), Vine(10), Viber(11), FireChat(12), Yik Yak(24), Whisper(30), WeChat(35), Telegram(47), and Frankly Chat(48)...whatever that is. BBM may be great but I've been watching these numbers for a while now and BBM has never even cracked the top 30. Good to know that "Nearly everyone I know with a non-BB device has installed BBM" but do they actually use it and will they spend money on it?
    25 Mar, 11:12 AM Reply Like
  • DaleHeller
    , contributor
    Comments (41) | Send Message
     
    I agree with others, downloading it, and actually using it are two distinct activities. I also know many that have downloaded it, but when questioned on if they use it, the answer has always been to the negative. Closed ecosystems (e.g. government secured services, some financial institutions, etc) may find it much more suited to their needs.

     

    Interestingly, I've not read of any government that is looking at BBM as an adjunct to non BBRY phone eligibility for secured communications.
    25 Mar, 11:21 AM Reply Like
  • Zack 800
    , contributor
    Comments (705) | Send Message
     
    @DH

     

    With 10 billion messages sent daily through BBM, somebody is using it. Because you and others don't see it doesn't mean that it is not happening. It is a big, wide world out there.
    25 Mar, 12:09 PM Reply Like
  • Cliff Hilton
    , contributor
    Comments (1499) | Send Message
     
    @TGP59,

     

    "I'm going to keep trusting Paypal, thanks."

     

    Blackberry can compete with Paypal for trusted transfers via mobile. http://etsy.me/1fY2HGZ,...

     

    Only PayPal was hacked.

     

    by JJ - 3/14/14 5:04 PM

     

    In Reply to: Poll: Has you computer ever been hacked? by Lee Koo (ADMIN) Moderator CNET staff

     

    "My computer itself was never hacked. I use Zone Alarm Extreme Internet Security and have server disabled. The only thing that has been hacked was my PayPal account which I used my credit card to add funds. My credit card company straighten out the problem. The insane thing PayPal has is you could use your bank account to add funds. Anyone who uses their bank account on PayPal must be out of their mind."

     

    There's several more links out there if you care to search.

     

    I tried to find where Blackberry was hacked while using Blackberry Money but came up empty; no confirmed hacks.

     

    BBM could see a few more downloads and maybe add a few billion messages per day with security like that.
    25 Mar, 12:22 PM Reply Like
  • Robert Castleman
    , contributor
    Comments (245) | Send Message
     
    60m to 85m is a 41% increase. How is that slow growth?
    25 Mar, 12:34 PM Reply Like
  • pjews
    , contributor
    Comments (344) | Send Message
     
    The BB10 OS of cause.
    25 Mar, 02:39 PM Reply Like
  • shubarua1
    , contributor
    Comments (643) | Send Message
     
    Re. others downloading it, actually using it are two distinct activities

     

    Right. But there are cases like others downloading it and actually using it too.
    http://bit.ly/1n9WSzC

     

    Re. govt ....looking at BBM as an adjunct to non BBRY phone

     

    BBRY has just introduced eBBM to enterprises. It is in testing phase.
    25 Mar, 03:06 PM Reply Like
  • ELLAS
    , contributor
    Comments (1529) | Send Message
     
    Bob Casleman,
    Here are some facts to back BBM's growth. How many people downloaded BBM since going Cross Platform? I would assume well over 120M, if not more. The question is how many are actively using it on a daily basis. I know a few that use it 1 to 5 times a week. It all depends if they get a message.

     

    Check out links from 2013.

     

    As of now BBM is riding high in Google Play with downloads in the 10,000,000 - 50,000,000 range, putting it in the number one position for new releases!
    http://bit.ly/1rx1xLE

     

    By Monday the 28th BlackBerry Messenger will have upwards of 100m subscribers. Currently the market share is passing 90 million and rising steadily.
    http://bit.ly/1dcdtL5

     

    Hopefully John Chen will once and for all state the exact numbers of BBM Downloads and BBM active users and BBM casual users.
    25 Mar, 08:48 PM Reply Like
  • contrarianwise
    , contributor
    Comments (1039) | Send Message
     
    i like it!
    25 Mar, 09:03 PM Reply Like
  • contrarianwise
    , contributor
    Comments (1039) | Send Message
     
    thanks for the update Ellas --you the man!
    25 Mar, 10:09 PM Reply Like
  • shubarua1
    , contributor
    Comments (643) | Send Message
     
    Re. 60m to 80m is a 41% increase

     

    21 October 2013
    BBM for Android and iPhone official launch

     

    29 October 2013
    Blackberry claimed BBM now has monthly over 80m active users across Blacberry, Android and iOS ( excluding those who downloaded its app and didn't use it.)

     

    Monthly active users: Those who send or receive data through the BBM service within a given 30 day period. It is safe o assume that most people who downloaded BBM for Android or iOS used it al least once or twice.

     

    19 February 2014
    Blackberry announced today it has made the Android version of its BBM messaging app available for Gingerbread-powered devices.
    Products for Gingerbread, a 2 years old OS, account for 20% of all active Android devices - well used in emerging markets, where BBM is very popular.

     

    Gartner estimates 877 millon active Android devices last year, which suggests that (roughly) 175 million were on Gingerbread.

     

    In conclusion, Blackberry targets more Android users ( in addition to over 80m active users across BB, Android and iOS) after making BBM available for Gingerbread devices.

     

    Total active BBM users = 80m + x% of 175m

     

    Remember. (BBM on) Android Gingerbread devices are very popular in emerging markets.
    http://tnw.co/1jtm3LU
    26 Mar, 01:37 AM Reply Like
  • Crispin_in_Waterloo
    , contributor
    Comments (1057) | Send Message
     
    BlackBerry money has been running in Indonesia for quite some time now. It is a serious competitor to Pay Pal in that you don't need to use a browser. More like SMS money to transfer air time to someone else.

     

    It is another winner for the major targets: emerging market young people.
    25 Mar, 10:48 AM Reply Like
  • KIA Investment Research
    , contributor
    Comments (7997) | Send Message
     
    "BlackBerry money has been running in Indonesia for quite some time now."

     

    For well over a year.. and all I've heard is crickets.

     

    Can anyone comment on the number of transactions? Anything?
    *more crickets*
    26 Mar, 08:13 PM Reply Like
  • Cliff Hilton
    , contributor
    Comments (1499) | Send Message
     
    @Energy..,

     

    Too late to the party? Opinion or do you have some data to share?

     

    I remember when many shared that it was too late for Blackberry to enter the smartphone market with BB10. Yet it received the iF Award and now beat out the top 15 phones to take "Reader Choice" http://tchno.be/1eJLHrC. It' never too late.
    25 Mar, 10:57 AM Reply Like
  • contrarianwise
    , contributor
    Comments (1039) | Send Message
     
    the cream eventually rises to the top, the mantra is time and patience and a few bad teeth pulled! ouch!
    25 Mar, 10:44 PM Reply Like
  • KIA Investment Research
    , contributor
    Comments (7997) | Send Message
     
    Cliff,

     

    I'd like data from Crispin on BlackBerry money in Indonesia. Number of transactions or anything else.

     

    I'd like data from you on this statement: "And having the most secure messaging platform is a plus."

     

    For clients not using BES, how is it more secure? What is the key length and algorithm versus the competition.

     

    And remember, the Android version of BBM suffers all the weaknesses of that platform, just as the IOS version suffers all the weaknesses of that platform.

     

    How again is BBM the most secure messaging platform?
    26 Mar, 08:18 PM Reply Like
  • 10553331
    , contributor
    Comments (96) | Send Message
     
    BB is probably a bit late to the payment transfer party, but that is their own doing as they've had BBM Money out there for a while now. I believe it was released in Indonesia in mid 2013. BB does have the reputation to influence users should they get into BBM Money in any expansive way.

     

    While user number is often cited, what isn't cited is actual messages per user and total messages sent, both of which show BBM to be in the top messaging platforms. I believe they have more actual messages sent than whatsapp, despite a smaller base.

     

    As an observation, I used Glympse on BBM between a Z10 and iPhone recently. It's a handy tool to let someone know you're coming to get them and that they don't have to call you to be sure or to ask where you are.

     

    Finally, SA is mostly made of American investors. From most postings, SA readers do not really have a handle on what BB is because in the US, we only think of hardware sales at home. The mistake lies in the fact that there is a whole world out there that does not necessarily conform to US rules and thoughts. US Republicans call this American Exceptionalism. Outside the US, it's mainly called arrogance. Arrogance has no place in investing.
    25 Mar, 02:11 PM Reply Like
  • shubarua1
    , contributor
    Comments (643) | Send Message
     
    Re:BBM Money

     

    Indonesia is a country with 111% mobile penetration and population 242 million. As soon as BBM for Androd is released, the cross platform growth of the best mobile mesaging platform in the world should take hold of the Indonesian market place even more firmly.

     

    BBM is going cross platform (Android and iOS), it stands to reason that BBM money will hit those platforms( in Indonesia, Android matters more than iOS).
    http://bit.ly/1mw7aJe
    http://tnw.co/1mw7d7J
    27 Mar, 02:15 AM Reply Like
  • Roll up the RIM
    , contributor
    Comments (208) | Send Message
     
    Now the CFO of a Fortune 500 can eBBM stickers to his CEO along with the financial reports!

     

    Blackberry just jumped the shark, and Chen has played a weak hand.
    25 Mar, 02:54 PM Reply Like
  • ELLAS
    , contributor
    Comments (1529) | Send Message
     
    eBBM looks like a huge winner, don't you think. ;)
    ---------
    First Solution, BBM Protected, will Provide Secure, Enterprise-Class Mobile Messaging for Regulated Industries
    http://bit.ly/1gCJJax

     

    QUOTE:
    BlackBerry's end-to-end security model is built on a foundation of secure hardware interacting with secure software. Security is reinforced at every level of the device from CPU to boot ROM, to OS and file system, and applications. The root of trust that BlackBerry builds for its customers remains unbroken throughout the chain, and is unlike other security models that rely on the interaction of components from multiple vendors.
    25 Mar, 08:39 PM Reply Like
  • TS Nelson
    , contributor
    Comments (324) | Send Message
     
    Another idea to monetize the BlackBerry brand and its reputation would be to offer an email service. Most existing email services such as Gmail make money by selling the user data and not charging the user.
    Some people might feel more comfortable paying a small fee for an email account that keeps their data private, such a service could sail under the recognized and trusted BlackBerry flag.
    25 Mar, 06:20 PM Reply Like
  • jcount
    , contributor
    Comments (155) | Send Message
     
    Money transfer are free in my country till 2016, if they can get the emerging world great for them. Still it seems like an idea a six year old kid might have. We got this lemonade let's make some money who cares if it tastes good or bad?
    25 Mar, 07:22 PM Reply Like
  • Loon-a-tick
    , contributor
    Comments (1464) | Send Message
     
    Has anyone mentioned that the Canadian Gov. stopped the deal to sell to Lenovo and offered a 800 million Canadian Tax refund as an alternative? Count in the 300 mil of property sales and we have another Billion total.
    So ....3 billion in cash ... BBM valued at ? etc.. etc..
    Share holders need some modest sales and a couple of good ideas moving forward and we will see some pleasant returns.
    I had a stupid Idea for BB. I got pulled over for speeding today AND HAD NO IDEA THE SPEED LIMIT THERE WAS 50k.
    So BB should sell a transmitter to Municipalities so that we receive a cell phone or car computer ...beep/ warning that there is an unreasonable speed limit ahead and we should slow down. Oooodles of money there buddies. I never had any idea there was speed limits as low as 50 K.
    25 Mar, 09:29 PM Reply Like
  • contrarianwise
    , contributor
    Comments (1039) | Send Message
     
    thanks Loon a tick--I didn't know any of this
    25 Mar, 10:02 PM Reply Like
  • ELLAS
    , contributor
    Comments (1529) | Send Message
     
    Loon-a-tick
    Yup, especially in places where the speed limit is 70k then it "All of a sudden" drops to 50k, with a police car 40 to 60 meters away tracking you via radar, just to surprise you with a wonderful speeding ticket.

     

    Its a cash cow nothing more.
    25 Mar, 11:56 PM Reply Like
  • contrarianwise
    , contributor
    Comments (1039) | Send Message
     
    so, if they had a 1B writedown on unsold inventory thanks to TH; they had a cash infusion of 700 Million from the government; they also had a 1.25B cash infusion from Watsa;

     

    Looks to me like they tried to cover the errors of TH while giving Chen some cash to go forward. Looks to me like TH nearly destroyed the company with the over build and that the Foxconn deal was none too soon.

     

    I imagine this quarter the shorts will also try to drive them into the ground but the new cash should help as well as off loading the device business.
    26 Mar, 09:11 AM Reply Like
  • Loon-a-tick
    , contributor
    Comments (1464) | Send Message
     
    My dad is in the Hospital dying and today ...the second day in a row the same town cops nailed me again for making a right turn on a red light. The sign had to be 35 feet in the air and I had to pull around a cop sitting there who sits there to nail people from out of town on that every day. You know cities are poor when the cops are just out to collect fees. At least they were nice to me while they (you knowed) me . Gosh cops are young these days...24 or 5...
    26 Mar, 04:31 PM Reply Like
  • Loon-a-tick
    , contributor
    Comments (1464) | Send Message
     
    They have lots of cash to do something with. Lets hope that something is done better than last time.
    26 Mar, 04:32 PM Reply Like
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