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Literary Openings, Gadgets and News in Nigeria | Duketundesblog: WhatsApps is now free of Charge

Tuesday, 19 January 2016

WhatsApps is now free of Charge

TECH NEWS: This is a good news for all WhatsApps users, as the popular messaging app just release a post suggesting there will not be a charge fee again after one year use. “We’re happy to announce that WhatsApp will no longer charge subscription fees,” the company said on Monday in a blog post.
 WhatsApp has always been free to download and use for the first year. In fact, original users of the app, who joined WhatsApp when it started out six years back, were given a free lifetime service. But in recent years, the company introduced a subscription fee of 0.99 cents after the first free year. Technology website Recode reports that it may be a few weeks before the payments infrastructure is completely out of all versions of the app and if you’ve already paid the 99 cents for the year then there won’t be a refund, though subscription fees will cease immediately.

The announcement also implies that the Facebook-owned WhatsApp may potentially be forfeiting hundreds of millions in annual revenue. The messenger app that allows a quick, easy and inexpensive way to send messages, photos and videos, particularly popular in Europe, parts of Asia and South America, has seen incredible growth over the past few years and is just weeks away from hitting the billion user milestone, according to figures reported by Statista . It has currently 990 million users and growing.

Although the fee is negligible, the company admits that it has harmed its growth, particularly in developing countries where access to banking services is not so good. According to a report in The Guardian , developing markets are a key focus area for Facebook and WhatsApp since Messenger, Facebook’s home grown messaging service, has a strong penetration in the western markets, particularly the US. In contrast, WhatsApp leads the way in developing nations, including Brazil, India, Indonesia and South Africa.

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