Whatsapp Free of Charge For All Users, Except Companies
WhatsApp, the popular Internet messaging service, will soon be totally free for all users. After the service was bought by Facebook in 2014 for US$19 billion, now Whatsapp has nearly 1 billion users. According to Whatsapp blog post on Monday, the company will no longer charge a $1 annual subscription fee for some users after their first year. Which means Whatsapp free of charge for all users.
“….we’re happy to announce that WhatsApp will no longer charge subscription fees.”
Previously Whatsapp charge users for US$0.99 for subscription which is applied to certain users after a year of free use. WhatsApp was only charging the fee in a handful of countries like the United States and United Kingdom. However, WhatsApp never made much money from its subscription fee; only around $20 million in 2013 revenue to help cover costs.
“Over the next several weeks, we’ll remove fees from the different versions of our app and WhatsApp will no longer charge you for our service.”
The company realizes that this subscription things hasn’t worked well, due to many Whatsapp users don’t have debit or credit card. And it makes them worried they will lose access to their friends and family after their first year. Therefore, the company decided to make Whatsapp is free from subscription fee for all users. But for people who previously paid for WhatsApp will not receive a refund.
People might wonder how could Whatsapp will still running out without subscription fees, is it a sign that Whatsapp will invite third parties to advertise on it? The answer is no. Instead of third party ads or spam, the company would start experimenting the new ways to make money, including potentially charging companies like banks and airlines that wanted to contact WhatsApp users directly.
“Starting this year, we will test tools that allow you to use WhatsApp to communicate with businesses and organizations that you want to hear from. That could mean communicating with your bank about whether a recent transaction was fraudulent, or with an airline about a delayed flight.”
Within this week, people able check on their Whatsapp payment info to see if their Whatsapp is free or not. If the service expiration says “lifetime” then, it means Whatsapp free of charge.