How To: Activate BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) for Successful Instant Messaging

Activate BlackBerry Messenger (BBM) for Successful Instant Messaging

If you're an owner of a BlackBerry smartphone, chances are you're going to want to use BBM, which for all of you newbie BlackBerry owners, stands for BlackBerry Messenger.  BBM is an instant messaging application developed solely for BlackBerry device owners.

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To get started with BlackBerry Messenger, just follow the simple steps below.

Requirements for BBM

  • A BlackBerry smartphone with 64MB of memory (Java compatible).
  • 2.4MB of available smartphone memory.
  • BlackBerry Device Software v4.5 or later.

All newer BlackBerry smartphones come with BBM pre-installed, and you can find it by:

  1. Going to the Home Screen.
  2. Click the Instant Messaging folder.
    NOTE: If you can't find it, you may be viewing your default Home Screen with only six icons.  If so, click the Menu key to display all your smartphone applications.
  3. Click on the BlackBerry Messenger icon.

If you don't already have BBM on your smartphone, you can use your BlackBerry web browser to go to and download it.

  • A data service plan from your wireless service provider (internet plan) so you can send/receive PIN messages.
  • Your PIN code.

To find your PIN code:

  1. Go to Options, then
  2. Status and finally
  3. PIN.

Activating BlackBerry Messenger

After you've successfully installed the BBM software on you BlackBerry, you're ready to log on.  The very first time, you'll need to pick a display name to identify yourself while instant messaging.  You'll also need to create a password.

Once you've created a username and password, you'll be logged into BBM whenever your phone is connected to your wireless network.  Once you've built your contact list, you can send and receive messages.


If you can seem to activate BBM, try some of the following solutions:

  • Make sure your internet connection is turned on and that you're connected to a network.
  • Turn off the BlackBerry, remove the battery for 30 seconds to reset, reinstall battery and reboot your device.
  • Some wireless providers have not set up some of the features of BlackBerry Messenger, which could prevent you from using those features or options.

Video Demo

Check out this quick video detailing how to find BlackBerry Messenger on your device and how to locate the PIN number, along with sending friend requests on the Orange network.

Change Your BBM Display Picture or Display Name

Depending on your wireless service provider, your contacts might not see the display picture that you originally set in BlackBerry Messenger.  To change the image and your name:

  1. On the Home Screen or in the Instant Messaging folder, click the BlackBerry Messenger icon.
  2. On the contact list screen, press the Menu key.
  3. Click View My Profile.
  4. Press the Menu key to change your display picture.
  5. Click Change Display Picture.
  6. Click on your chosen picture.
  7. If necessary, center the picture in the box.
  8. Press the Menu key.
  9. Click Crop and Save.
  10. To change your display name, type a new name.
  11. Press the Menu key.
  12. Click Save.

Add Contacts to BlackBerry Messenger

Simply follow the instructions in the video below to get started adding contacts.  If you want to know more about managing BlackBerry Messenger, download the official User Guide (PDF).  For more help in general, visit, or check out some of the other videos on WonderHowTo.

[ref. HowStuffWorks, BlackBerry]

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