WhatsApp, the leading IM platform in the world right now, has announced through its official blog that it will not charge its users with any subscription fee in the future. Moreover, the company will not introduce any in-app advertisements for generating revenue.
For many years, we’ve asked some people to pay a fee for using WhatsApp after their first year. As we’ve grown, we’ve found that this approach hasn’t worked well. Many WhatsApp users don’t have a debit or credit card number and they worried they’d lose access to their friends and family after their first year. So 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 used to charge a one-time fee for downloading WhatsApp when it was available exclusively for iOS, but the company changed its business model when it launched the app for Android users. The company used to charge an yearly fee of Rs. 55 (~$0.99) to some users after the first year.
The company made an exception for consumers in countries like India, where very few people have access to debit or credit cards. The company used to extend the subscription even after the first year. Now, the company has pledged to keep its services free forever.
We will test tools that allow you to use WhatsApp to communicate with businesses and organizations that you want to hear from.
As per ReCode, if you are someone who has paid for the app already, the company will not refund the money. The company plans to generate revenue through services to businesses. This means that you will be able to send or receive messages from your bank or airlines. The Facebook-owned IM platform has over 900 million users worldwide, and is much ahead of its competitors like Viber, Skype, WeChat, and others.