Messaging War on Flipboard

By Hoan Do | Cyber-war of Messaging Apps

Shift Messenger, Designed To Help Co-Workers Share Schedules, Raises $1.5M Seed Round

Managing and trading shifts is one of the most onerous tasks faced by retail employees, especially since many don’t have set hours. Shift Messenger, a Y Combinator alum, launched earlier this year to give workers a communication tool specifically designed to help them manage their schedules. Now …

Startups

Western Messaging Apps Are Looking to China’s WeChat for Inspiration

In WeChat we trust.

This seems to be the unwritten — although oft-mentioned — motto of some of North America’s most prominent messaging companies these days. Apps like Kik, Tango, Snapchat and Facebook’s Messenger are all starting to act more like WeChat, China’s dominant messaging service from …

Asia

Messaging App Firm Line Is Testing A $2 Per Month Music Streaming Service

Line, the Japanese messaging app with 205 million active users, is continuing its push into entertainment services after it began testing a standalone $2 per month music streaming app.

Line Music is being trialled in Thailand, where Line has carried out a series of other pilots related to its shift …

Japan

Facebook Messenger's video calling lands in (almost) every country

Facebook Messenger's video calling feature is now available in more locations -- almost everywhere, according to David Marcus, "with the exception of a few countries." Marcus, the social network's Vice President of Messaging Products, announced the development as a status update. He didn't exactly …

Facebook

There's a new BBM for iOS feature that will actually make iMessage users jealous

True story: a little over a year ago, a friend of mine asked me to help him pick out an Android phone because he was tired of his iPhone. For a few …

iMessage

Vietnam’s chat app Zalo challenges Facebook with 30 million registered users

FPT may be Vietnam’s largest tech company with a newfangled US$3 million seed fund announced just yesterday, but VNG is considered Vietnam’s largest …

Asia

Games may be coming to Facebook Messenger

You may eventually be able to play games over Facebook Messenger. According to The Information, Facebook has confirmed that it's speaking with developers about creating games that work within Messenger and live inside of its app store. It sounds as though Facebook's plans for games are still at an …

Facebook

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Skype

Facebook: Spinning off Messenger was a good move, and here's why

Some Facebook users hate change — that's just fact.

Roll out a radically revamped News Feed or tinker too much with privacy settings, and a subset of users inevitably cry foul. That's what happened when Facebook made its standalone Messenger app a mandatory download last year for people who wanted …

Facebook

TalkTalk's unlimited everything SIM is £12 per month but laden with fine print

The UK mobile market is undergoing a serious makeover, with two huge acquisitions on the horizon and new MVNOs popping up left, right and centre. Quad-play provider TalkTalk is already known for its low-cost broadband, TV and mobile deals, but now's a more important time than most to show you can …

Talk Talk

Viber, Google are helping people to call loved ones in Nepal

In the aftermath of the earthquake, getting calls and messages into or out of Nepal has been one of the greatest challenges facing those searching for loved ones.

In an effort to aid communication, American phone companies like T-Mobile are offering free calls to and from Nepal, and a number of …

Google

Facebook adds video calling to Messenger

Facebook has today introduced video calling in Messenger. This means that now you can have a face-to-face chat with your friends via Facebook.

The new feature is available today on iOS and Android devices in the UK, US, Belgium, Canada, Croatia, Denmark, France, Greece, Ireland, Laos, Lithuania, …

Facebook

WhatsApp starts rolling out voice calling on iOS

After months of waiting, free voice calling on WhatsApp finally arrived on Android late last month. iOS users were left waiting for the feature, however – until today.

A new version of the messenger is now live in the App Store, calling support included.

It seems the feature isn’t actually active for …

WhatsApp

WhatsApp now has 800M monthly active users

Messenger app WhatsApp now has 800 million monthly active users, says founder Jan Koum.

The app is up 100 million users since January, when it hit 700 million monthly active users. The app has been expanding rapidly. Just a month ago Google Play showed that WhatsApp had been downloaded on Android …

Skype for Mac update brings link previews and animated GIFs straight to chats

Skype for Mac is today receiving a small but nifty upgrade to its chat interface.

With version 7.7 of the software, shared links will now show a visual summary of the content. Web Page links now display a preview of the site, with embedded images and animated GIFs in the chat window. Video links …

Skype

Kik Introduces An In-Chat Browser For Its Mobile Messaging App

Facebook has developed an app platform for Messenger, but underdog rival Kik has continued its focus on putting the entire web in chat after upgrading its in-app sidebar browser into a full-blown browser for its messaging app.

The change means that Kik users can now summon a full browser inside …

Mobile Messaging

Twilio adds video capabilities to its communications platform

Twilio today is adding video calling to its array of communication services for businesses.

The company says video can be a an effective way of communicating an intricate problem to businesses and service providers. For instance, let’s say the faucet in my bathroom is leaky and water’s everywhere, …

WhatsApp for Android gets a much-needed Material Design makeover, bringing cleaner layouts and new icons

At long last, WhatsApp has received a Material Design overhaul on Android, and it now looks a whole lot better than the last version.

The update isn’t yet available on Google Play, so you’ll need to install the latest version off WhatsApp’s site to see the changes.

WhatsApp version 2.12.38 now …

Material Design

Southeast Asian Telecom Giant Singtel Releases Wavee App, A Skype And WhatsApp Competitor

Singtel, Southeast Asia’s biggest telecom with more than 500 million subscribers, has unleashed a new Skype and WhatsApp competitor called Wavee.

Now available on iOS and Android, Wavee lets users make voice and video calls and send instant messages.

It also has several features more commonly seen in …

Skype

Facebook launches Messenger for the Web with a standalone browser version

Facebook is putting that Messenger.com domain to good use: The social network just launched a Messenger client on the Web that separates it from the Facebook.com homepage.

With Messenger.com, Facebook is clearly gearing users up for its upcoming Messenger Business integration, in which users can …

Facebook

Giphy and LINE jointly launch a new sticker pack for more animated madness

Giphy, the GIF search engine, and LINE, the social networking messaging company behind all those wacky animations, have jointly launched a pack of 24 brand new stickers.

In this collaboration, Giphy worked with four of its artists — Csada Klement, Nelson Diaz, Julian Glander and Daniella Urdinlaiz — …

GIF Animations

Line restarts IPO preparations, could bow to $10B this year

Line, the chat app and gaming platform which is becoming a lifestyle portal, is restarting preparations for an IPO. The Nikkei is reporting that the …

IPOs

Did Messenger just make Facebook cool for teens again? Not quite.

Being "cool" is a fleeting sensation for Silicon Valley companies, where innovation moves at breakneck speeds, competition is relentless and users often fickle.

But when you're an 11-year-old publicly traded company like Facebook, it means dealing with the challenge of keeping young people hooked …

Facebook

Steller Storytelling App Gets A Huge Makeover

Steller is a storytelling app that has been around since the beginning of 2014, but today the company has announced a huge overhaul of the app’s UX to make editing and creating that much simpler.

Steller allows users to upload videos, photos, and add text to create a storybook experience on mobile. …

Storytelling

Caliber Debuts A Messaging App Designed For Business Professionals

A number of startups in years past have tried to carve out their own niche in the business networking space under the looming shadow of LinkedIn by offering an alternative way to connect with industry colleagues, often on mobile. But today, a new app called Caliber is offering a slightly different …

Startups

We Heart It, An Image-Sharing App Used By 30M Young Women, Adds Messaging

We Heart It, a visual bookmarking service popular with teenaged girls, is transforming itself into a messaging app with the launch of new feature called Postcards.

In a previous era, young girls sat around with fashion magazines and scissors and cut out their favorite inspirational images, turning …

Facebook’s Messenger Platform Preserves WhatsApp’s Clarity Of Purpose

We demystified it last month, but Facebook’s $18 billion acquisition of WhatsApp should begin to make more sense to people today after the company announced that its Messenger service will become a platform for third parties — as TechCrunch first reported last week.

The Messenger Platform will allow …

Facebook

WhatsApp cofounder: Voice calling coming to iOS in a ‘couple weeks’

SAN FRANCISCO — Voice calling on WhatsApp will be coming to iOS in a “couple weeks,” said WhatsApp cofounder Brian Acton today.

At Facebook’s F8 developers’ conference here, Acton, speaking on a panel with Instagram cofounder Mike Krieger and head of Facebook Messenger David Marcus, said that …

Facebook Messenger will soon let you chat with stores

Facebook's Messenger won't just be for chatting with family and friends in the near future. The social network has unveiled a business feature for Messenger that lets you talk to a store about your orders. The option not only spares you from a flurry of email for receipts and shipping, but gives …