Leaked pic: BB Messenger on Android

If this picture is a sign of things to come, Research in Motion may have come one step closer to throwing in the towel.

Techradar posted these images, and claims they came from an unnamed employee at RIM. They show what is unmistakeably a version of Blackberry Messenger running on Android.

Blackberry Messenger, known by its devotees as BBM, is a proprietary texting/instant messaging platform for Blackberry users only. Since the last century, BBM has been a way to say “You’re on a Blackberry; so am I!”

But now, there have been rumors that RIM will bring the software to other mobile operating systems for the first time. This is yet another step in RIM’s acceptance that it can no longer survive by holding exclusively onto its own proprietary platform.

Nokia suffered a similar fate as RIM. It relied exclusively on its own mobile OS, Symbian, which quickly became a relic after the iPhone and Android swept the market. It felt it was too big to fail so it didn’t swiftly act to keep up with the changing environment, and today you’ll have a very tough time finding a Nokia phone at any US store.

Nokia ended up partnering with Microsoft to bring Windows Phone 7 to future handsets. If RIM continues on the path it’s been on for the last couple years, it may need to seriously consider a similar move, and its most probably partner would be Google and Android.