One of the biggest draws to BBM is how private and secure it is when compared to pretty much any other mobile messaging service out there. A lot of BBM lovers out there have wanted to see their favorite take more steps and expand more into time-sensitive messages and media sharing like apps like Snapchat, Slingshot; etc. It seems BlackBerry has been thinking along those same lines too as they’ve shared with everyone today a few new features they’re working on that puts the focus on that aspect of messaging specifically. In a new post on the Inside BlackBerry Blog, BBM’s Jeff Gadway outlines two new key features that are being tested in a small beta group right now on Android and BlackBerry 10.

Timed Messages

  • By setting a timer you can control how long messages and pictures you share with contacts can be viewed within BBM. Setting the timer is super easy: Before you send your message or picture, you just tap on the timer icon next to the text bar and choose a length of time you want the recipient to be able to view that message. The message is hidden until the recipient touches and holds on the chat. Then, once the timer has expired (or if the recipient takes their finger off the screen), the message is no longer visible. What I love about the timer is that I can move seamlessly between timed messages and normal messages in a single chat depending on what I’m sending. Oh, and don’t get any smart ideas about screen shots…if a screen shot is detected, the sender is notified.

Message Retraction

  • We’ve all been there, that time when you sent a message to the wrong person. Wouldn’t it be great if you could recall that message before they see it? Or maybe you’ve sent a piece of sensitive info to a contact – like your credit card number so they can buy some concert tix for you – and you don’t want that information to remain in the BBM chat it… Well, now you can retract your message to remove it from your BBM chat. Just touch and hold on the message you want to retract and choose ‘retract message’ from the menu. This one works with messages, not pictures, and is only available in one-to-one chats.

As stated before, these features are currently being tested, and should be available “very soon” for BlackBerry 10, Android, and iPhone with BBM 2.5. No word on whether Windows Phone or BBOS devices will also be getting this update.