When BBM leaked about a month ago, I prayed that the final app wouldn’t look the way it did.
Guess what? BlackBerry released the final version of BBM on the Play Store last night, and boy, is it ugly.
This isn’t to say that it won’t be hugely successful; it likely will. The normal, sane people won’t mind any app that is given to them: have you heard of WeChat?
Before we begin, I’d like to say that I don’t hate BlackBerry, or anything of the sort. In fact, I wanted them to succeed. More comptetion means better products for consumers.
Apparently, there is an “incredible demand to start using BBM.” Luckily, I already submitted my email earlier, so I can cut in line. The first thing you see is the ugly gradient in the background of the app: this will be a recurring theme of BBM, so have fun trying to erase it from your mind. Also, the buttons are too short; buttons on a mobile device, should around 48 dp in height. This gives you a generous amount of space to tap away. Clearly, BB doesn’t agree.
Plus, that smiley eerily reminds me of Yahoo! Messenger. *shudders*
Now when creating an account for the first time, you’re greeted with a screen that takes the narrow, hard to touch buttons a step further. Asking me to confirm my password? On a mobile device? Why? This is a perfect example of a bad sign up experience.
On the main app screen, you see… a NON STANDARD ACTION BAR.. AT THE BOTTOM. There is a reason why action bars are not at the bottom in Android: Some phones have capacitive buttons or even touch buttons at the bottom (like the Galaxy Nexus in the screenshot) and thus, there is a risk of touching the wrong icon.
Not only this, but Blackberry decides to use a back button, when one clearly already exists built into Android! Again, why? This whole app exudes ugliness.
Then, another inconsistency. The BBM logo is slightly rounded, while here in the app, the icon looks much more squared off. And that recurring ugly font just breaks my heart.
That is pretty much all to see in this app. The minute I opened the app, I knew it would be uninstalled.
While I understand that Blackberry wants to push it’s design language (a terrible one, at that) to users on Android and iOS so that they may feel more comfortable when transitioning to a BlackBerry device, it is still unacceptable to use another platform’s design guidelines when Android’s should be used. I just want to say, it really hurts me to see these kinds of badly developed ads from such large corporations. It’s really a shame.
What do you think? Let me know in the comments below!