In what seems like a Hail Mary pass to some observers, Research in Motion is preparing to launch a BlackBerry music service by signing deals with major record labels. RIM could be ready to begin testing the service within the next few weeks, according to CNET.

The BBM Music service is based on BlackBerry Messenger, the instant messenger service that is arguably the most popular feature currently offered by the troubled company. BBM enables users to communicate with each other instantly for free. It also has a high degree of security, which makes it the IM service of choice in communities concerned about messages being “overheard” by government authorities or by commercial rivals.

Sources told the Wall Street Journal that BBM Music will supposedly allow users to access 50 songs at a time and share those songs over BlackBerry Messenger. The security aspect of the platform would certainly be attractive to Universal Music Group, Sony Music, Warner Music Group and EMI Group, the four major labels.

Despite making noticeable gains in the Middle East and a few other territories, RIM’s share of the global smartphone market stands at not quite 12 percent, according to Gartner. This is a drop of nearly 8 percent in less than a year.

RIM is at a critical time, as its hopes are pinned on the success of its next generation QNX operating system. Its PlayBook tablet and its new smartphone product line use QNX. Additionally, RIM has given outside developers greater access to BBM, enabling the implementation of better and more appealing apps.

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