WhatsApp for Android now lets all users make voice calls

31 Mar 2015 | Author: | No comments yet »

WhatsApp ‘Calls’ feature is finally rolled outGaming execs: Join 180 select leaders from King, Glu, Rovio, Unity, Facebook, and more to plan your path to global domination in 2015. If you’ve been impatiently waiting for an invite to try out the new WhatsApp calling feature, you’ll be glad to know someone finally flipped the switch for everybody.WhatsApp appears to be quietly rolling out voice calling for all Android users, meaning you no longer need an invitation to get the coveted new feature. The only catch is you need to make sure you have the most recent version of the app installed: you can grab it from the WhatsApp site, APK Mirror, or wait for version 2.12.19 to show up in Google Play. Some reports say that the latest version of WhatsApp on Google Play comes with the new calling feature, but it may not be available for everyone just yet.

WhatsApp’s much-discussed move to support voice-calls is nearing completion, as news emerges that anyone on Android can now make calls in-app to other WhatsApp users. The Facebook-owned mobile messaging company first revealed its plans to introduce voice-calls way back in February last year, but it wasn’t until the past few months when the feature first started showing up in some Android users’ apps. Things subsequently opened up a little, with the feature being made available to anyone who received a call from another WhatsApp user who had voice-calls unlocked.

Everyone has unlimited mins these days,’ while another user said: ‘Tried #WhatsAppCalls it’s good only if u have good internet speed.’ The ‘Calls’ feature requires an internet connection and works in a similar way to how Skype connects web-based calls – a service known as ‘voice over internet protocol’ or VoIP. Other messaging apps, including Viber, already offer free voice and video calls to users, and it’s believed WhatsApp’s update is designed to rival such services. But this new addition is more like a telephone call than a voicemail, putting Facebook-owned WhatsApp in competition with VoIP apps like Skype and Viber.

The public version launched with English and Spanish translations, but the Microsoft-owned firm is looking to add more than 40 languages to the service. The new Calls tab shows a list of all your incoming, outgoing, and missed calls, and you can initiate a call right from the Contacts list, or while you’re chatting with someone. At the Facebook F8 conference held recently, WhatsApp cofounder Brian Acton said that the messaging service is preparing to bring the voice calling feature to iOS users in the coming weeks.

Google also recently added a live translation tool to is Google Translate app and this could be the next step for messaging apps such as Viber and Whatsapp. Interestingly, WhatsApp calling seems to be now open to all in India, just when reports about Trai seeking views to prepare regulatory framework for Internet-based calling and messaging applications or over-the-top (OTT) players have started surfacing online. Indeed, the degree of differentiation between the various players is shrinking, with the likes of Viber, Korea’s Kakao Talk, Facebook Messenger, Japan’s Line, and now WhatsApp all offering voice-chat.

WhatsApp has also semi-emulated its competitors by introducing a web-based client of sorts, which was a major departure for an app that began as a mobile-only affair. However, with one billion installations on Android alone, and 700 million-plus active users sending 30 billion messages each day, Facebook’s move was all about future-proofing itself from the ever-shifting sands of technological change.

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