Facebook’s WhatsApp is taking its popular messaging service to desktops with a new Mac and Windows app that was released on Tuesday.
Before this app was released, WhatsApp software has been a mobile-only messaging platform, and it had the “WhatsApp Web” modality where the user had to scan a QR Code on the screen of the desktop computer with a smartphone to start using it from a desktop computer.
With this new update, now WhatsApp could still compete against other instant messaging services like WeChat, Line or Telegram, that already had a desktop version available for a while.
The announcement was made on WhatsApp blog this Tuesday, where they said that the desktop version is very similar to WhatsApp Web. The app is available for Apple’s iOS (and OS X), Windows 8, 8.1 and 10 (also Windows phones), Nokia, Android, and Blackberry.
WhatsApp vs. the messaging apps
WhatsApp was released back in January 2010; up to date, it has about 1 billion active users, being one of the most used and popular message services available worldwide.
The strongest competence against WhatsApp is the Asian-based messaging services like WeChat with about 468 million active users, Viber with 209 million active users and LINE with 170 million active users.
The messaging service handled about ten billion messages per day back in August 2012, and it grew from two billion in April 2012, and one billion the previous year in October, almost two years when it was released.
Back on June 13, 2013, WhatsApp announced that they had reached their new daily record by processing 27 billion messages.
Let’s remember that in February 2014, a few months after a venture capital financing round at a $1.5 billion valuation, Facebook announced that they were acquiring WhatsApp for US$19 billion, being their largest acquisition to date.
In April 2014, WhatsApp crossed half-a-billion user mark. As of May 2014, it had crossed 50 million monthly active users in India, which is also its largest country by the number of monthly active users.
As of October 2014, WhatsApp has crossed 70 million monthly active users in India, which is 10% of its total user base. Finally on February 2016, WhatsApp has reached over 1 billion users around the world.