Instant messengers are a very popular category of apps and there’s no shortage of them. Samsung ChatON is one of the new comers and it’s not only limited to Samsung devices. It’s been available to Android and iOS over the past year and now, it’s also available for BlackBerry phones. The app is totally free and the service is cross-platform, which means users across different platforms can send messages to other devices, and for free. There’re also developments on the Android tablets front – Samsung has released an optimized version of the app for Android tablets now. The iOS version of the app was launched early this year while the Android app came out in October last year along the Bada version.

Now, available to BlackBerry users. WP7, are you next?

Now, available to BlackBerry users. WP7, are you next?

ChatON faces stiff competition from apps such as Whatsapp, which offer a BBM-like service for free across platforms. Samsung hopes to bridge the gap in popularity by adding more support to the app and also, adding lots of unique features to the app. ChatON has features such as Buddy Interactions which gives you an idea of the most interacted with friends in your contact list. The app is somewhat like social networking as it allows contacts to leave messages on your profile. There’s also support for watching media mentioned in chatrooms. Of course, there are the standard animated and customizable messages that you can send to your friends.

The only platform that Samsung hasn’t expanded the service to, is Windows Phone 7. Going by the pace of development and launches for various platforms, it’s only a matter of time before Windows Phone 7 gets its own app too. While Samsung ChatON has a large user base of its own, it’s still not comparable to Whatsapp. The key feature that draws users to instant messengers has been the ability to send and receive any number of messages without having to pay the mobile provider for each one. Of course, there’s the data plan bills but that’s miniscule in comparison to cost of sending SMS’ over the network.

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