BlackBerry just announced at that BBM—one of the first and most popular alternatives to texting—will be available for iPhones and Androids this summer.

But first thing first, BlackBerry formally released Channels, an interactive social media platform for its users.

The new system combines BBM with Twitter and Facebook. Rather than adding friends to a personal contact list, users will follow others’ Channels (celebrities and brands included) and also accept other follow requests. It is expected to work in favor of brands and celebrities. Status updates, likes or comments are also a part of the Channel experience.

As of now, there seems to be more buzz around BBM for iPhones than Channels. But reviews and public response of the newly launched software is much anticipated—we will have to see whether BlackBerry will have another breakthrough alternative to text messaging.