Technology

Facebook’s WhatsApp Will Be How the World Makes Phone Calls

This Feb. 19, 2014 file photo shows the WhatsApp and Facebook app icons on an iPhone in New York. More “headline-grabbing” acquisitions are likely over the coming year as businesses take advantage of a period of improving economic growth and cheap financing, according to business consulting firm EY. Facebook announced its biggest ever acquisition with a proposed $19 billion takeover of WhatsApp. (AP Photo/Patrick Sison, File)
This Feb. 19, 2014 file photo shows the WhatsApp and Facebook app icons on an iPhone in New York. (AP Photo/Patrick Sison, File)

 

(Wired) – WhatsApp is the world’s most popular smartphone messaging app, letting more than 800 million people send and receive texts on the cheap. But it’s evolving into something more.

On Tuesday, the company, which is owned by Facebook, released a new version of the app that allows people with iPhones to not only text people, but actually talk to them. This built on a similar move the company made at the end of March, when it quietly released an Android update that did the same thing. And in the week following the addition of voice calling on Android, WhatsApp-related traffic increased about 5 percent on carrier networks, according to a study by Allot Communications—an Israeli company that helps manage wireless network traffic worldwide.

That figure will likely get a lot bigger as WhatsApp shifts from being the world’s favorite messaging app to become a more wide-ranging—and bandwidth-intensive—communication tool.

Others have offered internet voice calls on smartphones, most notably Skype and Viber. But WhatsApp is different. So many people already use the app, and the company is intent on keeping it free (or nearly free). Though it has little traction here in the US, WhatsApp is enormously popular in parts of Europe and the developing world—areas where there’s a hunger for cheap communication. The result is an app that could bring inexpensive Internet calls to an audience of unprecedented size.

READ MORE

Tags
Show More

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Back to top button

Subscribe today for free and be the first to have news and information delivered directly to your inbox.


By submitting this form, you are consenting to receive marketing emails from: Washington Informer Newspaper, 3117 Martin Luther King Jr. Ave SE, Washington, DC, 20032, http://www.washingtoninformer.com. You can revoke your consent to receive emails at any time by using the SafeUnsubscribe® link, found at the bottom of every email. Emails are serviced by Constant Contact

Adblock Detected

Please consider supporting us by disabling your ad blocker
%d bloggers like this: