What’s up with Whatsapp | #SNHUMK555

February 16, 2013

Social Media Marketing

Living abroad, far away from family and friends, means to stay in contact via email, text messages, video calls and any other option available in today’s technology developed world. Overall one wants to avoid huge bills and therefore one seeks to find cost effective options.

I remember the day when my company introduced BlackBerry – be available wherever you are and do not stop working, seems to be the approach of companies. Well, what most colleagues liked about it was the messenger function; a dialogue among people without sending ordinary SMS and paying a fortune. BlackBerry may not be on the top of the technological development today but to me it was the introduction to instant messaging.

About two years ago a friend asked me: “do you use Whatsapp?” I was like: “what’s this? Another service I have to pay for?”…”no, no, it’s for free (ok, you have to pay little money to download the app) – we can text, send pictures and videos without paying as long as you have internet connection”. Wow, I thought; I need this app.

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Since then I became a heavy user of Whatsapp. iMessage, another instant messenger service launched by Apple in 2011, entered the market of free text messaging much later – in the US it may be more utilized than in my home country Germany. But what I found quite interesting is the fact that a friend of mine, who’s very advanced in utilizing social media and mobile applications just asked me beginning of this year whether I use Whatsapp. It’s interesting how and at what time people come across new mobile applications.

Whatsapp has become a top-selling iPhone, Android and BlackBerry app in several markets, without money spent on promotion or advertising. Since its launch in July 2009, WhatsApp has slowly grown by word-of-mouth and the same simple viral mechanism that fuelled Skype: both sender and receiver must own the app. Unlike Skype or Yahoo the founder’s approach was always based on SMS. They wanted a user switching from SMS to Whatsapp messaging within seconds.

Both Apple’s iMessage and Whatsapp are running triple-digit growth rates. By comparison, in 2012, iMessage service was transmitting more than 2 billion messages while Whatsapp has hit 11 billion outbound (7 billion inbound) messages a day. In August 2012 Whatsapp reported “only” 6 billion messages a day. An increase by 50% within half a year it is a quite impressive number, don’t you think?

I am very satisfied about the development of social media mobile applications as I am able to stay in contact with everyone I am connected to without spending a fortune. One only has to coordinate the various social media apps one has on the phone; mom on skype, neighbors via iMessage, friends abroad via Whatsapp. I could wish for only one communication channel but doesn’t one like to enjoy variety?

Don’t let the stream of communication be interrupted!


Arthur, C. (December 4, 2012). WhatsApp: the new text messaging. Guardian. Retrieved from http://www.guardian.co.uk/technology/shortcuts/2012/dec/04/whatsapp-new-text-messaging

Kuittinen, G. (January 14, 2013). Carriers’ messaging nightmare gets worse as Apple’s iMessage growth pulls even with WhatsApp. BGR. Retrieved from http://bgr.com/2013/01/24/apple-imessage-growth-analysis-whatsapp-304019/

Bradshaw, T. (November 14, 2012). WhatsApp users get the message. Financial Times. Retrieved from http://www.ft.com/cms/s/2/30fd99a2-0c60-11e1-88c6-00144feabdc0.html#axzz2L56PhRxP


One Comment on “What’s up with Whatsapp | #SNHUMK555”

  1. Mayra Ruby Says:

    I had never heard of Whatsapp. Interesting, I love the name. As soon as I started reading it I was immediately started thinking that it was, similar to Skype. Does this work outside of the country as well? Or is it only free in the US?


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