In an effort to remain relevant among the number of chatting apps on people’s smartphones today, Blackberry is overhauling its messaging service, BBM, with several new features that are clearly inspired by the popular Snapchat. While currently still in beta, the new update coming soon will introduce disappearing messages on a timer, as well as the ability to retract messages even after they’re sent from your phone.
A release date isn’t specified yet, BBM version 2.5 will be coming to Android, iOS, and Blackberry 10 in the near future. The new features are coming under a theme of privacy, with Blackberry billing them as “what you share is yours to control – even once it’s left your phone.”
The timer feature itself isn’t new, as even Apple has introduced such options recently in iOS 8, having audio and video messages self-destruct after a brief period, but that only means that BBM users should find it familiar. Before sending a message, either text alone or with media attached, you can set a timer with several intervals ranging from 1 to 15 seconds. After the recipient opens your message, it will disappear after the chosen time elapses.
While retracting messages is new and sounds cool, it is also only effective assuming the recipient hasn’t opened the message yet. Senders simply touch the message on their screen and choose to delete it. This only works with 1-to-1 text messages, not with pictures or video. So just like Snapchat and all the others, if you accidentally send something you didn’t mean to, and the other person opens the message, you can only hope they don’t know how to take screen shots.