The most popular messaging app, WhatsApp announced recently that it had amassed a whopping 2 billion users! This number increased by 1.5 billion from two years ago.
This makes WhatsApp the only second app to join the 2 billion users club: Facebook was the first app to reach that number.
Founded in 2009 by Jan Koum and Brian Acton, WhatsApp started off as an alternative to SMS. However, today, it supports sending a wide variety of media files such as texts, photos, videos, documents, and voice messages. A remarkable feature of this app is that all the messages and calls made on WhatsApp are secure with end-to-end encryption. This means that no third party, including WhatsApp, can listen to or read the messages.
For this reason, WhatsApp has been lauded by security experts. However, governments across the world have increasingly tried to contest this feature.
“We will not compromise on security because that would make people less safe,” according to WhatsApp’s announcement made recently. “For even more protection, we work with top security experts, employ industry leading technology to stop misuse as well as provide controls and ways to report issues — without sacrificing privacy.”
WhatsApp was sold to Facebook in 2014 for $19 billion, the largest-ever acquisition by the social media company till date.1