whatsapp

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Facebook buys WhatsApp for $16 billion

Today it was announced that Facebook is buying WhatsApp for a whopping $16 billion. The SEC filing today reveals that WhatsApp will continue to operate as an independent entity under Facebook (much as Instagram did after their acquisition by Facebook), though the company claims that the deal will accelerate "Facebook's ability to bring connectivity and utility to the world." Facebook has long had their own messaging service in Facebook Messenger and it's not exactly clear how WhatsApp will complement that going forward.

Facebook is the world's largest social network with 1.23 billion users and growing, and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said that "WhatsApp is on the a path to connect 1 billion people. The service that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable."

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One of the great new features for Windows Phone 8 Update 3 is actually for developers: adding custom tones to their app. While Windows Phone customers have had the ability to add custom notifications to their devices for a little while now, being able to assign them to different apps was a little trickier.

Late last night, WhatsApp beta version 368 began rolling out to testers in the private program. On board under the Settings is a new section called ‘notification tones’.

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A handful of popular Windows Phone apps have received updates recently that appear to mainly deal with fixing bugs and improving performance.

First up is the addictive Empire building game from Disney Mobile, Star Wars: Tiny Death Star.  The game has you building an all-new Death Star and defeating the Rebel Alliance.  The update takes the game to version 1.0.1.7 and fixes the problem of stores not producing coins while the game is closed of minimized.

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Latest WhatsApp update adds Hindi language support

While almost every other day, I post about the growing Windows Phone app ecosystem in India (and get jealous rants from folks here from Brazil), the growth is rubbing on the global players as well.

In its latest update, WhatsApp has added support for Hindi language. Hindi, along with English, is the official language of India. Globally, behind Mandarin, Spanish, and English, Hindi is the fourth most widely spoken language.

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WhatsApp picks up bug fixes in latest update

WhatsApp has been receiving a suspiciously high number of app updates recently. It’s as if they’ve taken a few of Santa’s elves for to help pick up the pace. Last Saturday the app was updated with account migration settings. And just two days ago it was updated with more features. Here we are today with another update from the WhatsApp team. Let’s see what’s new.

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We’ve been teasing you folks about WhatsApp for Windows Phone, specifically features that were being tested in the private beta. What are those new features? Just the ability to send pre-recorded videos and up to 10 images at once.

Luckily for you, version 2.11.340 of WhatsApp for the general public just went live in the Store and it has those aforementioned features, plus the usual bug fixes.

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WhatsApp has been plowing through feature updates in the private beta series. The latest version, beta 332, went out late last night/early this morning and continues to add new functions to the app. Those functions, including the coveted add pre-recorded videos and saving of sent videos, should be coming down the pike in a big update relatively soon.

Today’s update brings with it one big new feature: account data migration. By heading into Settings > Account, users will find a new addition near the bottom: Change My Number. Tapping that button brings you to an information screen, detailing the process. The next screen allows you to enter in your old and new phone numbers to begin the process.

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Just yesterday we reported on some forthcoming features in the popular messaging app WhatsApp. The new features, which include saving of videos to the device, were found in the private beta of the app. Soon after that article though, WhatsApp pushed out another update to version 2.11.322 and it now has the long coveted feature of attaching videos. We have verified that the new functionality is present.

The system for attaching videos is very basic. Users simply tap on the ‘Albums’ icon to browse their library of media, but instead of just photos, videos are now visible there as well. From that screen, users can just attach the video, which will then be auto-sent to the contact. It’s basic but it works and we imagine it will be refined a little over the next few betas. Limits for video size and length are currently not known.

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When WhatsApp isn’t pushing out public updates on a regular basis for Windows Phone, they’re busy jamming them out behind the scenes for their private beta. Looking at the latter, version 2.11.318 is making the rounds and it has been discovered that a few new features are on board. (The current public version is 312).

That’s good news as it means those features will be headed to the official, public version, presumably in a few weeks (or sooner).

So what’s new? Glad you asked as we have some screenshots and details.

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Telegram just announced on Twitter their messaging app is coming to Windows Phone in January 2014. Telegram lets you send messages, photos and videos to people who are in your phone contacts (and have Telegram). It’s already available on Android and iOS.

How is Telegram different from the popular messaging app, Whatsapp? Telegram’s team claim they are faster and way more secure.

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WhatsApp gets a very specific update tonight

It’s Friday, and it looks like the hardworking folks at WhatsApp are busy churning out more updates. I mean, why do in one update what you can do in five? Tonight, the popular messenger app has been bumped to version 2.11.312.0 and yes, it does come with a changelog. That’s the second update this week.

Unfortunately, no new features are available but if you speak Arabic or Hebrew, start high-fiving your friends, because you just got a “fix for difficulties entering your verification code”. Bam! How awesome is that?

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WhatsApp, the popular cross-platform messenger, will soon sport the ability for you to easily clear messages in conversations. The beta version of the app (2.11.309) has been bumped with this functionality, showing off exactly what's on the way to the live release.

If you've been holding out for a way to effectively clear messages older than a certain date, without removing the entire conversation then this will be for you.

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PSA: WhatsApp is not in open Beta for Windows Phone

Over the weekend, we started receiving a truckload of tips regarding the WhatsApp beta being “opened to the public”. For those who don’t know, WhatsApp maintains two branches, one being the public release the other one for beta development. The second branch is closed and “invite only” (yes, we’re a part of it) while the other one is for general release.

We obviously didn’t write anything on the story because frankly, it didn’t seem right. Why would WhatsApp suddenly open a beta that had been private for a very long time? Publicizing it as an "open beta" when it in fact was not, would do nothing but contribute to misinformation. So we held off.

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We told you recently of the upcoming changes expected with the cross platform instant messaging application WhatsApp, and the word on the street is that the update is now live. The changes in this version may not be the biggest in the world (unless you're on Windows Phone 7 - orientation lock!) but there are some welcome updates for you to enjoy. 

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