Today our mobile devices give us the ability to keep up constant communication with our family, friends and colleagues. Although the platforms that come pre-installed on our phones from our regular carriers work perfectly fine, the third party messaging apps available today provide more comprehensive messaging options than ever before.
The available apps provide new and better ways to keep in touch with the most important people in our lives, from simple text messaging to encrypted file sharing. We have found our top 6 apps, all with features that differentiate them from the rest, and will be perfect for mobile messaging in 2019.
WhatsApp is the most-used messaging app globally for both Android and iOS devices. It’s easy to set up, free and has all the same functionalities as the messaging platforms you’d normally use through your carrier. It shows text messages in the bubble-like threads we are all accustomed to and allows for photos, documents, gifs, photo editing features, location sending and voice and video calls.
Anyone who downloads the app can instantly access all of these features and chat with others on the app. As an added bonus, the app features end-to-end encryption for privacy and security for all users. However, the app is owned by Facebook so if you don’t want the data you provide to be shared with the social network, be sure to manage that in your app settings.
Although Facebook does own WhatsApp, the social network also has its own proprietary messaging platform that has many of the same features. This app is an extension of Facebook’s in-app chat platform but has expanded it so non-Facebook users have access to it as well. Messenger automatically populates your contacts, especially if you already have a Facebook account. The app supports gifs, provides tons of free stickers, allows for voice and video calls, and can even support money transfers.
In addition, for Android users who have the app there is a “Chat Heads” feature that keeps a chat icon floating at the top of your screen, bypassing the need to continuously open the app to continue your conversation. Anyone who downloads the app, with or without a Facebook account, can instantly access all of these features and start chatting.
Snapchat quickly rose to the top of the app charts as a simple photo sharing platform with the added bonus that each picture self-destructs after a few seconds. However, the app has expanded to support “snaps” in the form of photos, videos, or text messages. In addition, there are now funny photo filters, photo editing tools and ever-changing story sharing systems that allow users to share glimpses of their lives with each other throughout each day.
This app is particularly popular among younger demographic groups and celebrity users who want to give fans an even more personal look into their lives. What makes this app so special is its ability to continuously adapt and remain relevant in the fast-paced social media world.
Viber is a wildly popular messaging app with more than 1 billion users globally. It supports all of the same functions as other popular messaging apps, allowing for Viber to Viber messaging, phone and video calls, gifs and photos. However, Viber also allows for self-destructing messages like Snapchat, encrypted messages like WhatsApp and supports for Viber to non-Viber phone calls at low rates.
This app is especially useful for travel. There is no need to pay the international charges associated with regular phone carriers and has options to be completely free or operate at a much lower cost.
This is a Japanese app that has become extremely popular in Asia. Line, like the other messaging apps, supports all of the normal features while also offering the added perk of a more interactive platform. Like Facebook, Line has a timeline where you can post and comment on other users’ posts. There is a store of stickers and Line characters who are famous in Asia. The group chat feature allows for up to 200 people and there are also encryption options for messages.
Line opens up the idea of a messaging platform to meld with the more traditional social networks. Users can follow their favorite celebrities and interact with other users in a more comprehensive way. The app also allows for phone calls outside of the app for a small charge.
The self-proclaimed fastest messaging app has millions of active users and is constantly growing. Telegram can be used on both mobile and desktop devices and supports all of the major features we have seen in the other popular messaging platforms. This app is special in that it is extremely secure. Chat history can be stored in the cloud and chats are secured with 256-bit symmetric AES encryption, 2048-bit RSA encryption and Diffie-Hellman secure key exchange.
Telegram is a completely free app with no advertisements and a promise to keep it that way forever. It operates 100 percent from donations, is not looking to generate revenue and never intends to sell user data.
As we move further into 2019, you can explore the different messaging apps available and choose your favorite for yourself!
Author Bio: This post is written by Amanda Peterson.