Facebook just bought WhatsApp for the tidy sum of $16 billion. As the number one instant messaging app for smartphones, WhatsApp connects nearly 450 million active users a month. WhatsApp’s servers, which handle around 600 million photos daily, are now in the hands of Facebook.
It’s a scary thought which will obviously be met with skepticism by some users. Here are 5 initial doubts you may have about the Facebook-WhatsApp merger, and one reason you may disregard them all and stay with the mobile messaging service.
Privacy: We want to limit the influence of Facebook on our lives
We’re not oblivious: Facebook’s power and reach are amazing. The mammoth social media company already has control over much of the world’s online personal information. If we continue using WhatsApp, we’re helping Facebook create a monopoly over personal information, while at the same time, amassing a phone book with nearly 500 million numbers.
Why keep all your eggs in one basket when there are equally effective instant messaging alternatives?
Security: Don’t rely on WhatsApp’s engineers
Can we expect redemption? It seems pretty unlikely, especially considering the recent NSA scandal and the news that even mobile apps, including Facebook, were not immune to the collection of personal information by the American security agency. This isn’t exactly reassuring for WhatsApp users.
Advertising: Facebook could try to monetize the acquisition of WhatsApp
The developers of Instagram, another major mobile app recently acquired by Facebook, have already considered integrating ads into its newsfeeds.
Enough said– if Facebook bought WhatsApp for $16 billion, it’s certainly not going to idly sit by on its purchase. There’s a good chance that advertising will arrive sooner or later to WhatsApp, even if that’s denied by both Zuckerberg and WhatsApp’s CEO.
Interface: I don’t want to see blue in WhatsApp
As well as advertising, and despite declarations from the publisher saying ‘nothing’ will change, the possible integration of Facebook with WhatsApp is sobering. Imagine the famous blue buttons fixed to the Facebook home screen in WhatsApp.
These are only guesses, but we can’t help but think that some sort of integration between the two services is only a few months away.
Time to move on: WhatsApp is no longer fashionable
Although the number of WhatsApp users are exponentially increasing, the service may be losing a bit of its ‘trendiness’ as a result.
As many teens are gradually abandoning Facebook for Snapchat (which Facebook unsuccesfully tried to purchase last year), there are also a ton of people flocking to Telegram, which recently made news for its growing popularity.
And yet …. All your friends are on WhatsApp, so why change?
The one reason that’s enough to make you change your mind and stay with WhatsApp? With 450 million active users, WhatsApp has something that tips the scale far in its favor. There’s a good chance that most of your friends already have WhatsApp installed, and getting everyone to switch services may be more of a hassle than it’s worth.
As the saying goes, if it ain’t broke (yet), why fix it?
If you’re not convinced, and are looking to make the switch, there are plenty of popular alternatives to the service, which already have some traction in the market:
- Download Viber for iOS and Android
- Download Telegram for iOS and Android
- Download Line for iOS and Android
- Download Google Hangouts for iOS and Android
- Download BBM for iOS and Android