WhatsApp users flock to rival message platforms

WhatsApp users flock to rival message platforms

Message platforms Signal and Telegram have both seen an enormous surge in downloads round the world following a controversial change in WhatsApp’s terms and conditions.
WhatsApp has told its two billion users they need to allow it to share data with its parent company Facebook if they want to continue using it.
The change doesn’t apply to users within the UK and Europe.
However, the notification has been sent to everyone.
All WhatsApp users are going to be unable to continue with the service unless they accept the new terms by 8 February.
• WhatsApp and Facebook to share data outside Europe
Both Telegram and Signal also offer free-to-use encrypted messaging services.
Signal strength
According to data from analytics firm Sensor Tower, Signal was downloaded globally 246,000 times the week before WhatsApp announced the change on 4 January, and 8.8 million times the week after.
This included big surges in India, where downloads went from 12,000 to 2.7 million, the united kingdom (from 7,400 to 191,000) and therefore the US (63,000 to 1.1 million).
In a series of tweets, Signal said some people were reporting issues with creating groups and delays to verification codes arriving due to the rapid expansion but that it had been solving the problems .
“Our new servers are able to serve you,” it said on 10 January.
It also received endorsement from Tesla co-founder Elon Musk, who tweeted “use Signal” on 7 January.
Telegram soars
Telegram has proved even more popular, with downloads booming globally from 6.5 million for the week beginning 28 December to 11 million over the subsequent week.
In the UK, downloads went from 47,000 to 101,000. And within the US they went from 272,000 to 671,000.
During an equivalent period, WhatsApp’s global downloads shrank from 11.3 million to 9.2 million.
Even so, one industry watcher said he didn’t think this necessarily represented an enormous problem for WhatsApp, which has been downloaded 5.6 billion times since its launch in 2014.
“It’s getting to be difficult for rivals to interrupt user habits, and WhatsApp will still be one among the world’s hottest and widely used messaging platforms,” said Craig Chapple, mobile insights strategist at Sensor Tower.
“It’ll be interesting to ascertain whether this latest trend sticks, or users revert back to what they know.”
WhatsApp has said the info it’ll share with its parent company won’t include messages, groups or call logs.
However, it’ll include:
• phone number and other information provided on registration (such as name)
• information about the user’s phone, including make, model, and mobile company
• internet protocol (IP) addresses, which indicate the situation of a user’s internet connections
• any payments and financial transactions remodeled WhatsApp


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