How popular are online messaging services in recent times? Ask anyone who has been hooked to chat services such as WhatsApp for as long as they can remember. Basically, it's as big as owning a great smartphone in this part of the world.
WhatsApp has seen huge popularity among fans and the popularity has now taken such a turn that only recently Facebook decided to acquire it for a whooping $16 billion.
There's hardly anyone who doesn't know how the WhatsApp service works out, but since there are a few (like me) who are still living under a rock, WhatsApp Messenger is a cross-platform mobile messaging app which allows you to exchange messages without having to pay for SMS.
As of now, the WhatsApp Messenger is available for iPhone, BlackBerry, Android, Windows Phone and Nokia with the company making the app a cross-platform service. And since WhatsApp Messenger uses the same internet data plan that you use for email and web browsing, there is no cost to message and stay in touch with your friends.
But what if we keep the service aside for a minute and concentrate on others who serve in the same category? So here are the top 5 alternatives to WhatsApp that you could consider.
Similar to WhatsApp, LINE registers the user's phone number into its database where they can then connect with their phone contacts with people who are LINE users. The service also allows you to reply to messages by installing it on your PC or Mac, in case you also provided an email account. There's also the option for online calling.
Plying its trade probably before the inception of WhatsApp, Facebook's own Messenger service has been around for quite some time now. The only real problem in this respect is the fact the you cannot chat with people who are not on Facebook - which is highly unnatural in this age.
Skype involves a lot of nostalgia and remembering the good old days. The service remains quite popular among users as it not only a great option to make free calls, but also for sending texts. However, you'll have to approve contacts here before you can start communicating with that person.
All you need to do here is register with a certified email account and then select a username to get started. As promised, the app will assist you in sending messages to individuals or group - although calling facility isn't available.
Again, similar to WhatsApp, Viber uses you mobile number to identify users. You'll just have to wait for your unique access code that will go through your contacts and determine your friends who are also connected to the same service. The app will also allow you to make online calls.