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Android, iOS spark 20 million new users for BBM

Blackberry's messaging platform tallied 5 million downloads in the first eight hours following last week's launch.

BlackBerry's messaging platform had a strong first week on Android and iOS.

The company announced on Tuesday that 20 million new users have signed up for BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), bringing its total monthly active users to more than 80 million. According to BlackBerry, it defines monthly active users by those who "send or receive any data through the BBM service within a given 30-day period."

It's important to note that while BlackBerry's announcement was tied to last week's launch of BBM on Android and iOS, the company didn't say that those 20 million users definitely came from Apple or Google's platforms. That said, BBM was the top free app in 35 countries on Google Play, BlackBerry said. It also was the Apple App Store leader in 107 countries.

BlackBerry's service got off to a strong start last week. The company said it tallied 5 million downloads in just eight hours.

BBM could very well become an even more important product for BlackBerry. The embattled company, which has faced trouble selling hardware, is looking for strategic alternatives to its business model. Considering the popularity of multiplatform chatting applications, like WhatsApp, it's possible BBM could be a new threat in that space.