RIM releases BBM 7 beta with calls over Wi-Fi

Users can also back up their BBM profile so it can be automatically moved to a new BlackBerry smartphone

A new beta version of BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) that allows users to make voice calls over Wi-Fi is now available for download, Research In Motion said Tuesday.

The beta version of BBM 7 works on BlackBerry smartphones running BlackBerry OS version 6 or higher. RIM also plans to support smartphones running BlackBerry OS 5 at a future date, the company said.

With the Voice feature users can talk with BBM contacts across the globe for free over a Wi-Fi connection.

Users can initiate a call directly, or switch from a BBM text chat to voice, and back again. There is a presence feature that shows who is available to receive calls, RIM said.

A split-screen feature also allows users to talk and text at the same time. They can send a picture to their contact while talking with them, check other chats, email, or navigate to other applications while engaged on a voice call.

Another new feature is integration with BlackBerry ID, which allows users to back up their BBM profile, groups and contacts so they can be automatically moved to a new BlackBerry smartphone, including devices running the upcoming BlackBerry 10 operating system.

The new operating system, along with two new smartphones running it, will launch on Jan. 30, the company said earlier this week.

The company is hoping BlackBerry 10 -- which has been built from ground up with touch interfaces in mind -- will resuscitate its smartphone sales with features including Balance, allowing users to manage their work and private communications separately on the same device.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags mobilesmartphonesinternetBlackberrywirelessNetworkingvoipmobile applicationstelecommunicationinstant messagingconsumer electronicsresearch in motionInternet-based applications and servicesTelephony/conferencingWLANs / Wi-FiMobile OSesBlackBerry OS

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Mikael Ricknäs

IDG News Service
Show Comments

Essentials

Brother MFC-L3745CDW Colour Laser Multifunction

Learn more >

Mobile

Exec

Sony WH-1000XM4 Wireless Noise Cancelling Headphones

Learn more >

Budget

Back To Business Guide

Click for more ›

Brand Post

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Pope

Dynabook Portégé X30L-G

Ultimately this laptop has achieved everything I would hope for in a laptop for work, while fitting that into a form factor and weight that is remarkable.

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Featured Content

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?