Whatsapp, the world’s most popular messaging platform announced that its mobile application will now be free for lifetime.
Prior to this announcement, Whatsapp was made free to smartphone users for the 1st year, after that it starts charging 99 cents (US) annually. However, users who downloaded Whatsapp continued to enjoy the service for free over the years as they weren’t forced to pay for the app. There are no difference between the paid and free version either.
With the new announcement, users who already paid the 99 cents (US) for the year won’t be getting a refund.
In its official blog, Whatsapp said:
Despite the new business model, the company said that Whatsapp will remain ad-free, that it won’t enable 3rd party ads within the service.
WhatsApp, the messaging company Facebook bought in 2014 for $19 billion, has nearly 1 billion users, more than the 800 million Facebook Messenger active users. Whatsapp was launched in 2009.
The service allows smartphone users with mobile phone numbers to send & receive: text messages, images, video, location, audio media messages, and make voice calls. Whatsapp works on the following mobile operating system: iOS, Android, BlackBerry OS, BlackBerry 10, Windows Phone, Nokia Series 40, Symbian, Tizen & Firefox OS. On PC, Whatsapp Web can be accessed on browsers such as Chrome, Firefox, Opera & Safari.
As of January last year, over 30 billion messages were being sent every day via Whatsapp.[Source]– Whatsapp Blog