The social messaging platform, WhatsApp has crossed the milestone of 2 billion users. The Facebook-owned service has become a synonym for instant messaging among smartphone users across the world.
WhatsApp has retained its lead in the social messaging apps market. The major competitor, WeChat owned by Tencent hit a billion users mark a while ago. Another popular messaging service, Telegram has 300 million users. There is no confirmation on how many users WhatsApp has in India. It had reached the mark of 400 million users in July 2019. India continues to be an important market for WhatsApp.
In the official blog post announcement, WhatsApp has used this milestone to reiterate the importance of users’ messages encryption. The encryption practice has seen increased amount of pressure from governments around the world. Lawmakers argue that the encryption makes it difficult to fight things like terrorism.
WhatsApp CEO Will Cathcart said, “For all of human history, people have been able to communicate privately with each other, and we don’t think that should go away in a modern society.”
Facebook is making major changes to WhatsApp. The company is working towards making the service interoperable with Facebook’s other messaging clients. The plan was initially announced by Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg last year. The integration will have its own limits but it will unify the user base among all Facebook-owned platforms.
In India, WhatsApp has gained approval from the National Payments Corporation of India (NPCI) to roll out its payments platform in India. The company is running a pilot program for payment with a limited number of users. WhatsApp’s payment feature will create a good competition for other players including PhonePe, Google Pay, and Paytm.