Out of the blue, Facebook buys Whatsapp for a lot of money.
The next thing is two days later, Whatsapp collapses world wide for several hours. Unrelated? Maybe it was just Facebook mining all the texts from your Whatsapp messages. 🙂
Now everyone is looking for an alternative, in the Internet collective mentality, Whatsapp is not independent anymore (they were some months ago … ) and everyone hates Facebook, but no one erases their account.
What are the viable alternatives, if you are looking for an “independent” messaging app that is platform agnostic?
From Codigo Espagueti (in spanish), 5 alternatives.
Telegram, Viber, WeChat, Hike, and BBM.
From The Guardian, 6 alternatives.
Line, Kik, BBM, Viber, Google Hangouts, Skype.
From Mashable, 4 alternatives.
Viber, Kik, WeChat, Tango
Would this be the redemption of Blackberry? Apparently they are asleep on the wheel.
If you are paranoid, Open Whisper Systems offers two open source (and secure) alternatives. Red Phone (Voice) and Text Secure (Text). Both encrypt the call or the message on the phone and on-the-air.
Finnaly, The Hacker News, has a roundup of five instant messaging alternatives with encryption capabilities, Telegram, Surespot, Threema, and the above mentioned, Red Phone and Text Secure.
The next Whatsapp is whomever reaches a user critical mass, market will tell.
Over the last week I have installed two apps, Telegram and Line.
Line is a more “Facebook” like, promoting celebrities channels, and lots of paid avatars, Line in Japan, made more than 100 million dollars just selling avatars for chats, on the last quarter of 2013. They have a PC Desktop client, offer free video and audio calls, on-line games, and additions, such as Line Camera for adding decorations and stickers to your photos, Line Card, to send cards for Birthdays and other special occasions, Line Brush to draw doodles, Line Play for the games, Line tools, and even an Antivirus, and I see it as a mixture of Japan Crazy TV Games, Skype and Facebook.
Telegram, is simple and fast, with the possibility of securing communications between two users. They have gained 4 million users in the last 18 hours, and are quickly capitalizing on the vacuüm left by Whatsapp. They are open source, and it´s founder has offered 200,000 in bitcoins to whomever breaks the encryption.
The tide of public opinion (and my personal preference) seems to have shifted in Telegram’s favor.