Instant messaging is what everyone uses to connect to their friends today, be it locally or internationally.
The major problem with this service is that thousands of companies have ventured into this industry and this has made the choice of the best app to download and install on our devices harder than before. There are applications like WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, Google Hangouts, Skype, Viber, Line as well as Telegram and each of these apps comes in with a unique offering for its users. So, if you don’t use any of these apps or maybe you want to taste new pastures, here’s a quick look at what these apps have to offer.
WhatsApp is a free to download and install app. This app is used for instant messaging, as well as voice calling services. To register an account with WhatsApp, you only need a phone number and an internet connection and the rest will be magic. The app will however automatically add contacts based on the ones saved in your phonebook.
Even though the voice calling feature is not yet stable, the services you get with instant messaging are amazing. You can include videos, texts, voice notes, photos, as well as stickers in your messages. The only problem is that the free version is only valid for one year, after which you’ll have to pay an annual fee of $0.99.
Facebook is not new to anyone; however, Facebook Messenger might sound a little new. Well, if this is new to you, you better know that this is the chat messenger for Facebook users. All you need to get and use this app is a Facebook account and that’s it. You also have the optional option of adding a phone number, which can be helpful when contacting persons without the messenger on their devices.
All that WhatsApp does, Messenger even does better. You will be able to send messages, make voice calls as well as enjoy free video calls using Facebook Messenger. Unlike WhatsApp, Messenger app is free to download and use for life. All you need is a suitable internet connection.
Google is everywhere and this includes the instant messaging world. Using the Google Hangouts, you can send and receive messages from any person with the same app. Furthermore, voice and video calls are allowed on this platform.
Google Hangouts offers one of the best cross compatibility functionality. It can be used on multiple devices and you will have everything in all devices. The best part of this app is that you only need a Google or Gmail account in order to log in and start using it. Furthermore, the app has been integrated in Google+ and the Android 5.0 Lollipop devices as the default chat app. Just like many other apps on this list, Google Hangouts is free to download and use for life. All you need is an internet connection and a friend to chat or call.
Skype is the father of instant messaging and it does things the old school way. To get an account on Skype, you’ll need an email address and then create a user ID. However, this same ID will be applicable on all the devices that you’ll choose to install Skype, be it a phone, tablet or PC. Once installed, you need to have the Skype IDs of your friends or at least their Skype email address. This will help you find those using the app and you can start sending free messages to each other.
Skype offers better file sharing as it has no limits on the files you share, unlike WhatsApp, which only allows a maximum of 16MB. Furthermore, this app is free to download and use and with it, you will be able to make free voice and video calls as well. To add sugar to honey, Skype comes with a feature for calling non-Skype users at very affordable rates, be it on their mobile phone numbers or landlines. The good thing with this app is you don’t have to download it on your Windows 8, Xbox console as well as the upcoming Windows 10 – it comes preinstalled.
Viber is a free to download and install app that offers instant messaging and VoIP services. The app only asks for your phone number during registration and just like WhatsApp, the rest will be magic. The app will automatically add contacts to the list and you can immediately start chatting and calling these numbers for free.
You will also come across other features like video calling, Viber Games as well as Public Chats. Just like Skype, Viber also allows the users to connect to non-Viber users at very low costs, be it on their mobile phone numbers or even using their landlines. The collection of stickers you get with Viber is just amazing, however, not all of them are free to use.