Viber and WhatsApp to Introduce Paid Services for Calls and Messages
Viber and WhatsApp are two apps that are loggerheads when it comes to the world of instant messaging as well as local and international voice calling services.
While now these services are available for users at a zero cost, things might take a different shape shortly as the apps plan on rolling out paid services for their millions of users.
WhatsApp has more than 800 million users from all over the world; however, over 70 million people from this group are based in India. This is a huge market for WhatsApp and sadly enough, it is where the app is facing some tough times. Just recently, a credit rating firm released a statement stating that over the top players such as WhatsApp, WeChat and Viber may have to come out with a variety of VoIP packages that will be charged to their customers. This will call for a need for these apps to come up with a different model that separates their messaging and VoIP services.
Local WhatsApp calls to be regulated in India
Last month, a net neutrality panel asked for the regulation of WhatsApp, Skype and Viber calls, but only for domestic calls. What this means is that telecom service providers in this country will now have a fair chance to compete against these messaging and VoIP apps.
One thing that is not clear just yet is whether these regulations will come to the U.S. and the rest of the world. Many people are already using apps for making free calls and sending messages to other persons using the same apps, be it locally or internationally. As it stands, WhatsApp and Viber are all equipped with free voice calling abilities. However, the former is free for the first year, after which users have to pay a fee of $0.99 per year. On the other hand, Viber is totally free of any charge, but you must pay to make calls to landlines and other non-Viber mobile phone numbers.
WhatsApp and Viber are compatible with most devices
Both Viber and WhatsApp have the advantage of being compatible with almost all mobile devices. Whether you are using iOS, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone or even Symbian, you can download and install any of these apps without any problems. However, it is not possible for a WhatsApp user to call or message a Viber user directly.
There are those who will go for WhatsApp thanks to its simple and easy to use Material Design-powered user interface. The app has only three tabs – Calls, Chats and Contacts. It is also possible to record voice and video messages, all of which can be shared with individuals or in groups. WhatsApp has seen lots of updates come its way and as if now, users can enjoy low data voice calls using the app. However, there is still no support for video calling.
On Viber’s side, this app offers some of the best features of a messaging app. Users of the app have long been making voice calls using the app. The quality of calls is amazing and the interface it offers is very easy. In addition to voice calls, users can enjoy video calls as well as keep on touch with non-users of the app via the ViberOut feature.
Another very attractive feature of Viber is that it can be setup on PCs as a native app. Whether it’s Mac OS, Windows or Linux, you can use Viber to message and call anyone for free.
There is no doubt that these messaging apps have their pros and cons as well. However, there are lots of benefits for those who want to make calls. In case you want a free option for calling and messaging, you can always check out Facebook Messenger, WeChat or even Google Hangouts.