Yes you read the title right or you may have already used it. WhatsApp, the infamous instant messaging app, used by almost everybody, has enabled the Video Call feature for all its users since its latest update this week. The feature was only for its beta users but its now finally here for all of us. I decided to take it for a spin and following is my take on it.
WhatsApp got some new and amazing features in its latest beta release ( > 2.15.xx as at 31/03/16). Below is a little review of some of them after downloading and install a beta release (2.16).
So, we are again at the New Year, and that’s the pain for sysadmins of messaging services or any other telecommunication systems. And that’s because of the servers’ or networks’ saturation due to the huge traffic from their users, trying to send New Year wishes messages to their friends and relatives. Usually such issues happen with mobile phone networks, GSM, 2G, 3G, 4G etc, but for the second consecutive year, the online services too are suffering from those bottle necks. The most complained service this year or last year for some, is WhatsApp. At first, I got messages from friends in Mauritius asking about the issue, but it was working fine for me. Some even thought the service was blocked by the government. Mine was working fine (In Turkey), and posted about the WhatsApp issue on my Facebook page , and then noticed that it’s not in Mauritius only. Then, as time went, I started to experience issues here too, and it’s obvious, the New Year is 2 hours before Turkey’s , and it also confirms the fact that the issue was due to high traffic. News websites were also reporting about same . But its good to note that the official Twitter Account @wa_status where WhatsApp post system updates, had no indication at all about that downtime, but their in-app system status page displayed a “server experiencing a problem” message.
To check about the worldwide extent of the problem, I collected testimonials from friends around the world and confirmed once more my hypothesis (Sorry for that term, I had an Stats exam this morning 😛 )
Well well, when WhatsApp was bought by Facebook, the Social Media world shared mixed feelings regarding the future of the Most-Loved Mobile Instant-Messaging platform even though its founders promised to keep WhatsApp as ‘WhatsApp‘ – The same model. Facebook on its side said that it will bring its contributions to the app and connect more people through same. WhatsApp is the de-facto messaging platform on mobile phones, be it Android ones, iOS ones or Windows mobile ones, while its rival, Viber, is prefered for voice and video calling. – WhatApp and Viber share an almost similar model; that of enabling instant messaging with the possibility to share photos, videos, voice notes, emoticons, etc – So, how can you swallow the group of users still sticking to Viber because of its call features?.. (Let’s forget Skype for the time-being and concentrate on these two major rivals ) .. Well, you develop your own Call feature! And it’s Facebook! Anything it touches, becomes gold! Since then, there has been rumours about a Call feature being developed for WhatsApp. Facebook annonced it once and Mark Zuckerburg commented about it following a user’s question on Facebook. Release dates were not disclosed and spammers took advantage of that to mass-message fake WhatsApp Call activation links, which turned out to be user-data collecting honey-pots.. [Fast-Forward..] And then came the big day! Users got the upgrade message on their mobiles and downloaded the latest version (Mine’s 2.11.543). Among the new features, spare the tweaked UI, is a little phone icon next to the ‘Attach‘ icon. Brace Yourselves ! The Call feature is here, finally!