WhatsApp launches voice, video calls to desktop app
Facebook-owned messaging platform, WhatsApp, launched voice and video calling features to its desktop application on Thursday.
According to a statement, WhatsApp, said, “We’re excited to announce that private and secure one-to-one voice and video calls are now available on WhatsApp’s desktop app.
“Throughout the last year we’ve seen significant increases in people calling one another on WhatsApp, often for long conversations.
“Last New Year’s Eve, we broke the record for the most calls ever made in a single day with 1.4 billion voice and video calls.
“With so many people still apart from their loved ones, and adjusting to new ways of working, we want conversations on WhatsApp to feel as close to in-person as possible, regardless of where you are in the world or the tech you’re using.
“Answering on a bigger screen makes it easier to work with colleagues, see your family more clearly on a bigger canvas, or free up your hands to move around a room while talking.
“To make desktop calling more useful, we made sure it works seamlessly for both portrait and landscape orientation, appears in a resizable standalone window on your computer screen, and is set to be always on top so you never lose your video chats in a browser tab or stack of open windows.”
The need to facilitate calls over big screens put WhatsApp at the same level with video-conferencing VIPs, Zoom and Google Meet; however, it is vague if it has ambitions to compete with the two in the enterprise space.
Furthermore, with more than two billion users internationally, WhatsApp is second only to its parent firm Facebook Incorporation’s namesake application, nevertheless it is mostly used for personal calls, in contrast to Zoom or Google Meet.
WhatsApp Messenger, or simply WhatsApp, is an American freeware, cross-platform centralized messaging and voice-over-IP (VoIP) service owned by Facebook, Inc.
It was founded by Brian Acton and Jan Koum, former employees of Yahoo.
It allows users to send text messages and voice messages, make voice and video calls, and share images, documents, user locations, and other content.
WhatsApp’s client application runs on mobile devices, but is also accessible from desktop computers, as long as the user’s mobile device remains connected to the Internet while they use the desktop app.
The service requires each user to provide a standard cellular mobile telephone number for registering with the service.
In January 2018, WhatsApp released a standalone business app targeted at small business owners, called WhatsApp Business, to allow companies to communicate with customers who use the standard WhatsApp client.
WhatsApp competes with a number of messaging services. They include services like iMessage, WeChat, Telegram, Viber, LINE, and Signal. Both Telegram and Signal in particular were reported to get registration spikes during WhatsApp outages and controversies.
WhatsApp has increasingly drawn its innovation from competing services, such as a Telegram-inspired web version and features for groups.