Technology has come a long way since the dark days of SMSes. Kids these days will not understand how we used to pay 15 to 50 sen for every message being sent. Furthermore, every message had to be carefully curated to ensure that it fits within the character limits. Failure to do so would come with the consequence of up to 50 more sen.
Fast forward to today, and we have a wide variety of ways to send messages, to the point where we’re sick of receiving spam. However, not all chat apps are created equal. Due to its massive popularity, WhatsApp has become the chat app of choice for dodgy marketing material.
If WhatsApp is the only chat app you’ve got on your phone, here are some alternatives that will change the way you communicate with your loved ones (and perhaps even your not-so-loved ones).
WeChat is the biggest chat app in China and parts of Asia due to its popularity and function. You’ve probably come across WeChat Pay at a number of merchants, but that is only the tip of the iceberg to what the app offers. There are also games, social media, eWallet, rail-hailing, and more that have yet to be available to the rest of the world. For now, you can access its primary function: chatting without having to reveal your number.
If you live in Japan, Taiwan, or Thailand, it’s very common for people to ask you for your Line ID. Just like WeChat, Line also offers a wide range of services aside from its messaging system. There is Line Pay, news, video on demand, and even comic distribution.
Telegram has been the subject of interest and controversy due to its unique end-to-end encryption. While this offers more security to its users, it also tends to attract those with questionable intentions. According to Wikipedia, it was the world’s most downloaded app in January 2021.
Discord is well-known across the gaming community as it was developed for gamers. It syncs well with a number of popular games, giving access to voice calls during gameplay. Discord is also available as a chat app which functions like forums for discussions mostly related to games.
As part of the Facebook family, Messenger has grown to be one of the biggest messaging services around. Part of the appeal is being able to chat without having to divulge one’s phone number. Your chat, however, is linked to your Facebook profile, so be sure to change up your privacy settings to secure your personal information.
If you’re looking for a great chat app for a professional setting, Slack is one of the better choices available. It allows you to set up teams, showcase work and have discussions via chat, video, or voice. Slack is also integrated with many third-party services such as Google Drive, Trello, and Dropbox.
Having a variety of chat apps to choose from can help you organise your digital life. For example, shutting off Slack when it’s time to slack off, or keeping all the random players you’ve met on WoW on Discord until you’re ready to upgrade them to Messenger. And if you’re still sending SMSes, perhaps it’s time for a new phone. Looking for an affordable certified pre-owned phone? Check out shop.compasia.com where you’ll find flagship models for a fraction of the original price.