RIM has added voice support to its popular BBM service, giving BlackBerry customers the option to make free calls to other BBM users via WiFi.
The new BBM Voice feature is included in the latest update to BBM, version 7.
Users will be able to freely switch between BBM Text and BBM Voice, or utilise both features with a split screen option. It will be possible to use the BBM Voice service with Bluetooth and wired headsets, for additional convenience.
The new BBM 7 setup will back up the user profile with the BlackBerry ID, allowing all saved profile options, contacts and features to be restored when upgrading to a new BlackBerry device. This feature will also be compatible with the new BB10 OS, making switching from one device to the other as painless as possible.
BBM 7 with BBM Voice is available as a beta download, for all BlackBerry phones running BB OS 6 or above. Users still on BB OS 5 will have to wait a little longer before they will be able to access the new feature.
“With today's announcement we are expanding the capabilities of the service for deeper social engagement and even greater collaboration, beginning with voice functionality,” said T.A. McCann, Vice President of BBM and Social Communities at RIM. “The new BBM Voice feature is for when you are travelling and you want to call home without worrying about the phone charges. It is for when you have news and you cannot wait to share, for quickly expanding complicated details, and collaborating with colleagues.”
IF you have a compatible BB handset, and want to grab a slice of BBM Voice for your device, head on over to the BlackBerry Beta Zone and take it from there.