Published On: Sat, Oct 8th, 2016

Do we really need as many messaging apps?


Do we really need as many messaging apps

The whole world love to chat ever since the world was made small with cheaper internet connections.

Messenger, WhatsApp, Line, Hangouts, Hike, Allo — there are numerous messaging apps available for smartphones, and we all know there will be many more joining the club in future. Though the app developers had added unique features in each of them, one question has still been left unanswered — “Do we really need to install as many messaging apps?”

“We know Indians love to chat,” Google Product Lead for Communication Amit Fulay said at an event in India.

We completely agree with Fulay and would like to add that not only Indians, humans love to chat ever since the world was made small with cheaper internet connections. However, with a plethora of messaging apps out there, it is very confusing as to which one would be the best for ones communication.

While all messaging apps have chats, most feature voice and some also include video calling options. However, in order to use the particular app, you need to have your recipient also to be on the same app service and platform. For example, if you want to use Viber, your friends too have to install it.

Since almost all smartphone users utilise WhatsApp as their primary mode of messaging, there are many others who love to try out new messaging apps, forcing their friends to install and try them too.

For example, we have a few friends who still use BBM, while some use Line and Hike, along with WhatsApp. They prefer to send us messages using BBM, Line and Hike, forcing us to also install the same, simply so that we can communicate with them. If they could use WhatsApp, we would not need another app at all.

Yes, apps such as Hike offer offline modes for communications too — it allows you to send a text message in case the recipient is not connected to the internet. Apart from this unique and nice-to-have feature, there are similar types of useful features that other messaging apps offer and WhatsApp presently can’t match up to them.

So what happens to you as a user in the bargain? In order to cater to your ‘certain’ contacts having multiple messaging apps, you tend to install them too. In the bargain, you end up wasting immense space on your smartphone with unwanted apps flooding the internal storage. Additionally, each app will go through its own sync timings, not forgetting the massive update files being downloaded, utilising crucial and expensive data bandwidth. If you are using WhatsApp as your primary messaging service, installing additional apps will only add to the phone’s problems.

Apps create their own temporary junk files and flood the storage. All messaging apps stay active in the background clogging the system’s RAM and forcing the operating system and other apps to run slow, making the phone’s user interface sluggish. Each active app also pings and uses the internet data at timely intervals, syncing with the servers and looking for new updates, thus eating into your data plans and also pulling down (though marginally) your internet bandwidth speeds. Not to forget, each app also will add to the reason your smartphone heats up. And lastly, every app that is active in the background will only eat up into the most important resource of a smartphone — battery.

Hence the question once again — ‘Do we really need as many messaging apps?’

Adding multiple messengers will only add to your smartphone problems. And in addition to that, chatting on multiple apps simultaneously can also lead into stress and irritation. In order to save on your smarpthone’s resources, and reduce your stress levels, we think that maintaining a single messaging app, for instance WhatsApp (since most have it anyways), is the best option. Though many apps such as Snapchat and Allo have unique features that WhatsApp does not have, it’s up to you to decide what you use most.

Courtesy: DC

About the Author

Syed Ammar Alavi

- is Lahore (Pakistan) based journalist & writer with 25-year experience in print, wire and broadcast forms of journalism. His major fields of interest are politics, film,tv,sports, climate change and technology

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