A leak from a RIM employee has released the information that the renowned Blackberry Messenger application is coming to Android and iOS.
The RIM employee provided several pictures and screenshots along with the information that the Android version of the application is due before 2012. The app is currently in the final stages of beta testing and, from the pictures, appears to be almost ready for public release. I would expect the iOS application to be released shortly after this, in early 2012.
The application is expected to allow users to chat for free across platforms as with the Blackberry version of the application. However, I doubt that Android and iOS users will be given the ability to chat for free - data charges will still be present - which will keep the Blackberry devices slightly above these other platforms. It is currently unclear as to whether the recent in-app chatting functionality and BBM Music update will be included in these versions of the application. This could also allow the Blackberry application to stand above the competition.
With the recent releases of iMessage and Facebook Messenger, RIM will be trying to keep up with the many alternatives available across different platforms. I would expect a very user-focused application with all of the necessary features - as they have already been established on the Blackberry platform.
Don't worry, we will keep you up-to-date with all new developments regarding this project. Stay tuned!