Facebook-owned WhatsApp dropping subscription fees in favor of free service and relying other business model to generate revenue.
Prior to that WhatsApp used to charge $0.99 cents for one year, which impeded the growth of users since not all users had credit cards.
The paid model notably made WhatsApp stand out from the crowd, as almost every other social networking is free to use from the customer perspective. Although WhatsApp will stop charging customers from today, it will take a few weeks for the payment UI in apps to go away as app updates roll out to the store.
In summary, as is common nowadays, if you are not paying for it, you are the product with the new WhatsApp model. Some privacy-conscious individuals may fear data sharing with parent company Facebook, naturally. It will be interesting to see how this plays out in the coming months.
Naturally, people might wonder how we plan to keep WhatsApp running without subscription fees and if today’s announcement means we’re introducing third-party ads. The answer is no. 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. We all get these messages elsewhere today – through text messages and phone calls – so we want to test new tools to make this easier to do on WhatsApp, while still giving you an experience without third-party ads and spam.
Download WhatsApp from the App Store here.
Source : 9to5Mac