Message platforms Signal and Telegram have both seen a huge surge in downloads around the world following a controversial change in WhatsApp’s terms and conditions.
WhatsApp has told its two billion users they must allow it to share data with its parent company Facebook if they wish to continue using it.
The change does not apply to users in the UK and Europe.
Millions sign up to Signal and Telegram after WhatsApp announced a change to its termshttps://t.co/oVcgTcGwP7— BBC News (World) (@BBCWorld) January 12, 2021
However, the notification has been sent to everyone.
All WhatsApp users will be unable to continue with the service unless they accept the new terms by 8 February.
Both Telegram and Signal also offer free-to-use encrypted messaging services.
According to data from analytics firm Sensor Tower, Signal was downloaded globally 246,000 times the week before WhatsApp announced the change on 4 January, and 8.8 million times the week after.
This included big surges in India, where downloads went from 12,000 to 2.7 million, the UK (from 7,400 to 191,000) and the US (63,000 to 1.1 million).
In a series of tweets, Signal said some people were reporting issues with creating groups and delays to verification codes arriving because of the rapid expansion but that it was solving the issues.
“Our new servers are ready to serve you,” it said on 10 January.
We continue to shatter traffic records and add capacity as more and more people come to terms with how much they dislike Facebook’s new terms. If you weren’t able to create a new group recently, please try again. New servers are ready to serve you.— Signal (@signalapp) January 10, 2021
It also received endorsement from Tesla co-founder Elon Musk, who tweeted “use Signal” on 7 January.
Telegram has proved even more popular, with downloads booming globally from 6.5 million for the week beginning 28 December to 11 million over the following week.
In the UK, downloads went from 47,000 to 101,000. And in the US they went from 272,000 to 671,000.
During the same period, WhatsApp’s global downloads shrank from 11.3 million to 9.2 million.
Even so, one industry watcher said he did not think this necessarily represented a big problem for WhatsApp, which has been downloaded 5.6 billion times since its launch in 2014.
“It’s going to be difficult for rivals to break user habits, and WhatsApp will continue to be one of the world’s most popular and widely used messaging platforms,” said Craig Chapple, mobile insights strategist at Sensor Tower.
“It’ll be interesting to see whether this latest trend sticks, or users revert back to what they know.”
WhatsApp has said the data it will share with its parent company will not include messages, groups or call logs.
- Uneasy calm at WondaWorld Estates as wildlife officers move in to remove tigers
- Renowned American producer Timbaland reacts to Black Sherif’s Kwaku The Traveller
- Video of trainer playing with Cheddar’s tigers pops up
- 2 Nigerians arrested for attempting to kidnap a 5-year-old child
- Who is Kelvin Taylor? – Yvonne Nelson quizzes
- ‘My 2 tigers are to help boost tourism’ – Freedom Jacob Caesar
- Cheddar’s Tigers are well secured – Forestry Commission
- I took tramadol for confidence to approach my crush; I nearly died – 24-year-old man
- Ghana records $4.5bn remittances in 2021, places 2nd in Sub-Saharan Africa – World Bank
- What the law says about keeping wild animals like tigers as pets in Ghana
‘Put our taxes to good use’ – Agbogbloshie traders urge AMA to desilt clogged drains
Deliver textbooks for basic schools before end of second semester – GNAT President tells goverment
Ministry of Education signs contract with Publishers Association to print textbooks for basic schools
Philip Kyeremanteng: Why Achimota Forest must be reserved
I went through proper procedures to acquire my tigers – Freedom Jacob Caesar
Tension simmers at UEW as Governing Council Chairman directs Registrar to proceed on leave
Nana Kojo Quaidoo: NPP internal elections – Akoto factor still gathering momentum in Upper East Region
U-17 WWCQ: Ghana beats Morocco 2-0 to claim first leg advantage
New Music: Kuami Eugene, Wendy Shay release new singles, Lojay features Chris Brown
Work to commence on Tumu-Han-Lawra Highway in June – UWR Minister
Cheddar’s Tigers are well secured – Forestry Commission
Who is Kelvin Taylor? – Yvonne Nelson quizzes
Eastern Regional Security Council disclaims video on alleged ritual murder
AIMS holds awe-inspiring Climate Science Speaker Series (CSSS) 2022
2 Nigerians arrested for attempting to kidnap a 5-year-old child