While we don’t know which platform it will be landing on first, or exactly how it will be implemented, it signals the first significant evolution of WhatsApp following its $19 billion acquisition by Facebook.
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The feature is hardly original though. BlackBerry Messenger (BBM), Line, Skype and many other messaging apps have offered voice calls for some time, although given the size of WhatsApp – it now stands at 330 million daily and 465 million monthly active users, Koum announced today – it’s important for the service to maintain its rapid growth by offering a feature set comparative to its rivals.
WhatsApp is known for its simplicity, however. The app is approachable because it replaces SMS without bolting on too many peripheral, experimental or money-making features. During a panel at Mobile World Congress, Koum said these “core values” would be preserved when voice calling is patched in.
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