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Social Media Giant Purchases Messenger Startup for Billions

Posted by Kathryn Cartini  February 23, 2014 09:24 AM

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Facebook Acquires WhatsApp Messenger

Facebook Closes $19 Billion Acquisition of WhatsApp Smartphone Messenger

Facebook’s recent purchase of WhatsApp, a texting application company with roughly 450 million active users worldwide, is reported to be 19 times more than Facebook paid for Instagram in 2012. This bold move could reflect Facebook’s willingness to gather more successful mobile apps before rivals Google and Apple, especially given the WhatsApp’s expansive following in India as the companies all strive to continue growing overseas.

However some loyal users of the mobile messenger are already voicing concern the free app, currently void of advertisements, will transform into something much different after the buyout.

That said, Instagram users have more than doubled since Facebook’s takeover less than two years ago - even after Instagram’s introduction of ads.

"Our mission is to make the world more open and connected," Mark Zukerburg shared via Facebook post. "We do this by building services that help people share any type of content with any group of people they want. WhatsApp will help us do this by continuing to develop a service that people around the world love to use every day."

WhatsApp Messenger: Meet the Founders VIDEO | The New York Times

WhatsUp Messenger via Facebook - Icon RemainsWhatsApp Messenger via Facebook

Price: Free to Download. $0.99 after the first year.

Platforms: Telephony App only for iPhone & Android

Should you get it? If you like being on the pulse.

Thumbnail image for WhatsApp Messenger App via FacebookWhatsApp Messenger uses 3G/EDGE or WIFI when available to send and receive multimedia messages such as texts and pictures, but also audio notes and video messages.

The app works with your mobile number, integrating with your existing phone address book without the need for an additional account pin and username.

Push notifications also allow users to log in/out from other computers and devices seamlessly. Even if you miss a notification or your phone is shut off, WhatsApp will save your messages offline until you view them.

Unlike many other social sharing platforms, WhatsApp does not require you to add contacts. Because your address book connects to the app, contacts who are already using WhatsApp Messenger will automatically display under your Favorites.

Now you are in position to start layering content, broadcasting messages and having fun with WhatsApp Messenger. Share locations and places, exchange contacts, add custom notification sounds and wallpapers, as well as enjoy Landscape mode, message timestamps and the ability to access email chat history.

Currently the first year of WhatsApp is free, with the service costing $0.99 each year thereafter for continued unlimited messaging regardless of the amount of information sent or received, or how many contacts in a user’s profile and Group Chats.

Group Chats are conversations on WhatsApp with more than one of your contacts. There is no limit to how many contacts can join in a group chat, plus you can add or remove participants easily.

This includes anyone in your network sharing messages from overseas, which means there are no additional charges to send international messages. I feel this is what makes WhatsApp so attractive to Big Money Brands like Facebook as Zuckerberg continues his mission to bring Internet access to the remaining ⅔ of the world currently without.

If you have any feedback, questions or concerns, you can email WhatsApp at, visit the FAQ page of the WhatsApp website or post to twitter @WhatsApp.

Something else to note, Facebook reports Messenger, Facebook’s chat app, and WhatsApp will remain separate.

Now to your Most Downloaded iPhone and iPad Apps of the Week.

About Apptitude Test blogger Kathryn Cartini

Born to challenge the "status quo," with three older brothers Kathryn's first story was probably a tattle, a skill she managed to turn into a career in broadcasting. Now as a communications specialist and CEO of Peacock Media, Kathryn continues #SharingStories that grow businesses and inspire others to follow their hearts in work and life, herself included. More »

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