Telecom operators in Brazil have been working for months to undermine the legality of WhatsApp, and now a judge in Sao Paulo has apparently agreed with the arguments. Starting at 9PM ET this evening, WhatsApp was blocked in Brazil, and will continue to be blocked for 48 hours. Mobile operators have said they will enforce the block (probably while high fiving each other). What will happen in 48 hours is unclear, but you can bet Facebook has multiple planeloads of lawyers on their way to Brazil. WhatsApp founder Jan Koum is certainly not amused. Read More
Your phone probably comes with two options for SMS—Hangouts and whatever app the OEM designed. Neither of these are necessarily great options, but there are alternatives. And there's one more alternative today with AwSMS reaching the public beta phase.
Secure messaging client Telegram gets updated frequently with new features, but it's still 100% free and has no ads. The latest batch of awesome and inexplicably free stuff includes the option to have more than 200 members in a group, and should that larger group (or any group) need official admins, you can do that too. Read More
Version 1.4 of the Android Wear app started rolling out late Friday. The theme of this update, at least for what's currently live, is a set of changes to the Settings screen. There are a couple of new options, but they come at the expense of the battery stats screen. A look under the hood also shows that a few other features are either live or in the works for the next Wear OS update. Read More
Marshmallow is officially out now, and that means developers can update their apps with 6.0-specific features without feeling too guilty. Telegram is updating today with some Marshmallow tweaks, and at least some of you will be able to use them. Not many, though. Sorry. Read More
Just after announcing it is now seeing 12 billion messages per day (a 12-fold increase since February), messaging app Telegram has introduced yet another feature to differentiate itself from its competitors. As of today, Broadcast lists have been replaced with Channels—a new and improved version of the traditional broadcast.
WhatsApp has come a long way since its origins as an instant messaging client in 2009. By this time 2013, over 300 million people were running the app, and that was before Facebook decided to pay $19 billion for the service. By the beginning of this year, it had reached 700 million. Read More
Here's an idea. Let's take that video chatting thing that people do all the time using Skype, Hangouts, or FaceTime, and remove the sound. Huh, Yahoo is already doing that?
Yup, and the service is called Livetext. Yahoo has been testing it in Hong Kong, Taiwan, and Ireland. Now the tech company is bringing its intriguing communications platform to five additional countries. There's Canada and the US in North America. France, Germany, and the rest of the UK have joined Ireland in Europe.
In Yahoo's video of Livetext in action, you can see how each sentence you type appears at the bottom of a video feed of whomever you're chatting with. Read More