WhatsApp testing ZIP chat export feature, Facebook to gain ‘post via WhatsApp’ button

By Christian Zibreg on Feb 1, 2016

Facebook-owned WhatsApp is about to integrate more tightly with the social networking firm’s mobile client, as discovered Monday by German blog Macerkopf.de.

Facebook is testing the forthcoming version 2.12.17.689 update to WhatsApp for iOS which will permit users to export their chat archive as a ZIP file.

Currently, WhatsApp lets you back up and restore chat history via iCloud, so the addition of ZIP chat exporting will make it easier for users to download their instant messages to a computer.

In addition, Facebook is also testing a new WhatsApp integration in its mobile application for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad. Read More

 

WhatsApp to stop charging annual subscription fee in coming weeks

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 18, 2016

WhatsApp, a Facebook-owned mobile messaging service, announced on Monday that it’s going to stop charging customers a subscription fee of 99 cents per year. The service is currently provided at no cost during its free year, after which customers are being charged 99 cents per year to continue using the service.

Over the course of coming weeks, everyone will be able to download and use WhatsApp on their device totally free of charge and without a subscription fee. Read More

 

Outlook for iOS gains Skype integration, Mac app updated with Split View and full-screen support

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 13, 2016

Microsoft Outlook is an excellent email client, not just for mobile devices but on desktop platforms, too. And now, it’s about to get a lot better. According to Microsoft, Outlook for Mac now now officially supports Full Screen view for OS X Yosemite and up and OS X’s native full-screen view.

On the mobile front, Outlook for iOS has received a nice little update which brings Skype integration for calendar events so users can now make any meeting a Skype call that can be launched from the calendar event in Outlook. Read More

 

Free group video calling is coming to Skype’s iPhone and iPad application

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 13, 2016

Skype is celebrating its tenth anniversary so the Microsoft-owned company yesterday announced that users of its mobile application will soon be able to take advantage of a free group video calling feature.

According to Gurdeep Pall, Skype CVP, group video calling on mobile devices will be coming to Skype’s iPhone and iPad app “soon,” and to Windows 10 and Android devices. Read More

 

Native Facebook Messenger for Mac app revealed in leaked photo

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 10, 2016

Facebook may be bringing its popular messaging app to the desktop, according to a blurry photo obtained by TechCrunch which appears to show a native application being tested on a Mac notebook by an employee.

Facebook currently provides the Messenger app for a number of mobile platforms, in addition to a dedicated web interface at messenger.com and built-in messaging functionality available through its desktop UI at facebook.com. Read More

 

Facebook Messenger reaches the milestone of 800 million monthly users

By Christian Zibreg on Jan 7, 2016

Facebook Messenger has reached a new milestone as the service now claims 800 million monthly users, according to an announcement from Facebook itself on Thursday. “I’m happy to report that we’ve made a good step in that direction, and toward the end of 2015, we crossed the milestone of 800 million people using Messenger each month,” according to David Marcus, Facebook’s Vice President of Messaging Products.

The new milestone, according to latest Nielsen data, makes Messenger the fastest growing app of 2015. Read More

 

Google reportedly working on a brand new messaging app to take on Facebook

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 24, 2015

As reported on by The Wall Street Journal two days ago, citing people familiar with the matter, the Internet giant Google is allegedly working on a brand new messaging app to take on the growing popularity of apps for keeping in touch, namely Facebook-owned Messenger and WhatsApp.

In addition to messaging capability, the app is said to put a big emphasis on so-called chatbots, smart personal assistants that will scour the web and other sources to answer a question. Read More

 

WhatsApp video calling shown on leaked images, tabbed chats in the works

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 21, 2015

Facebook has been promising to add video calling to WhatsApp for over a year now and it looks like they could be on the cusp of releasing the feature in the coming days and weeks, as evidenced by a pair of leaked screenshots obtained by German Apple blog Macerkopf.de.

Moreover, the app will gain tabs for moving between multiple conversations with ease. Like Apple’s FaceTime, Skype, Messenger, Viber and many other messaging platforms, WhatsApp should permit users to send and receive video calls via Wi-Fi or cellular. Read More

 

Viber revamps share menu, rolls out new media settings & support for Wink messages

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 21, 2015

Viber for iPhone, iPod touch and iPad was updated this morning in the App Store with support for auto-disappearing Wink messages while introducing a redesigned share menu, more detailed information in group chats, the ability to select how long your media is stored for and a few design enhancements to the app’s introduction screens.

Viber, now owned by Japan’s Rakuten, has received a steady stream of updates as of recently.

The service offers a nicely done watchOS 2 app for your wrist that lets you read and respond to messages with dictation, canned replies and stickers. Read More

 

Facebook Messenger gains Photo Magic feature, per-chat customization and more

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 17, 2015

Less than twenty-four hours after rolling out Uber integration within Messenger, Facebook today announced a brand new update that enables per-chat customization and other enhancements for the popular messaging platform.

And as promised, the application now provides the Photo Magic feature to users in more countries following its recent soft-launch on Android in Australia.

Billed as an easier way to privately share photos with friends, Photo Magic taps into Facebook’s advanced face recognition algorithm to automatically recognize people in your photos, offering to share them via Messenger. Read More

 

Facebook Messenger gains 3D Touch shortcuts, message requests and snowflake animations

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 16, 2015

Facebook has released an update to its Messenger software in the App Store, bumping the app to version 52.0 and bringing out 3D Touch shortcuts on the Home screen for owners of the iPhone 6s or iPhone 6s Plus.

Just press Messenger’s icon lightly with 3D Touch and up pops a menu with the New Message option, along with handy shortcuts for starting a chat with your top three most-frequently messaged contacts. Read More

 

Sony releases PlayStation messaging app for iOS

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 8, 2015

Sony today released a brand new iPhone application in the App Store, PlayStation Messages. Conceived as a messaging app for fans of the PlayStation console, the software provides messaging capabilities that used to be part of the official PlayStation app, including availability and presence indicators, group chats with up to a hundred players, rich media in messages such as photos, voice, stickers, attachments and more. Read More

 

Next-generation Yahoo Messenger now available on iOS, web and Yahoo Mail

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 3, 2015

Yahoo today announced it’s re-launching its venerable messaging software—Yahoo Messenger—on iOS, Android, on the web and in Yahoo Mail on the desktop.

The app offers a fresh new messaging experience rebuilt from the ground up, integrates the best of the Flickr, Tumblr and Xobni, does photo sharing and animated GIFs and is focused on group messaging with features such as sharing, unsending and liking. Read More

 

Hangouts for iOS now supports Apple Watch, gains quick-replying from notifications and more

By Christian Zibreg on Dec 1, 2015

Google Hangouts, the search giant’s instant messaging and VoIP mobile client, was updated in the App Store last evening with several new features and refinements.

For starters, Apple Watch owners can now respond to instant messages received from other Hangout users directly on their wrist and also from the notification banner on their iPhone, iPod touch or iPad (provided they use iOS 9.1). Read More

 

Viber for iPhone now lets you recall sent chats, attach files, reply from notifications and more

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 24, 2015

Viber today pushed a couple notable improvements to its iOS messaging app in the App Store. Bumped to version 5.6.5, Viber for iPhone now makes it easy to delete a sent message for everyone, not just for yourself, which could come in handy after accidentally sending a message to the wrong person, allowing you to recall it immediately.

You can now send media directly from your shared iCloud albums, in addition to your Camera roll like before.

As a bonus, Viber now includes the ability to reply to messages directly from the notification banner and permits you to search your Viber chats and contacts from the Home screen, using iOS 9’s much improved Spotlight Search function. Read More

 

Pebble rolling out Text Reply for iOS feature

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 24, 2015

Pebble today announced a new messaging feature for iOS users designed to make it possible to send text messages through a carrier.

Dubbed Text Reply for iOS, this feature is in beta and available on the Pebble Time, Pebble Time Steel and Pebble Time Round family of smartwatches.

In addition, Text Reply for iOS is currently an AT&T exclusive though Pebble says it’s working on bringing this capability to Pebble fans on other carriers. Read More

 

Skype for iPhone and iPad gains Maps integration and other improvements in latest update

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 23, 2015

Microsoft’s Skype for iPhone and Skype for iPad apps received an update this morning in the App Store, bringing out new features including integration with Apple Maps. Now you can check locations in Maps directly from highlighted addresses and also call a phone number using Skype Credit directly from highlighted numbers.

The app is now easier to multi-task as well: you can now return to a call by pressing the Active Call banner in Skype. Read More

 

Facebook releases a version of Messenger that’s meant for the office

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 20, 2015

Facebook today launched a dedicated version of its mobile messaging software, Facebook Messenger, that’s meant to be used at work.

As reported on by TechCrunch, the applications is called Work Chat and available now for Android smartphones over at Google’s Play Store, while a version for iPhones is being worked on and scheduled to release soon.

The app is basically an expansion of Facebook at Work, the company’s business platform which has been in private testing for months now. Read More

 

WhatsApp picks up 3D Touch Peek and Pop, redesigned settings and more

By Christian Zibreg on Nov 16, 2015

Facebook-owned WhatsApp today issued a new update to its iPhone application in the App Store which brings extended support for 3D Touch on the iPhone6s and iPhone 6s Plus with Peek and Pop gestures for previewing chats without actually opening them.

The app’s also gained a redesigned settings interface, the ability to browse your starred messages in one place and optionally include rich previews when sharing links. Read More

 
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