AndroidWorld has reported that WhatsApp is working on a web version that makes it usable on computers as well.
The report got media attention when corroborated by its rival Telegram founder Pavel Durov’s revelations about certain code strings found in the latest update of WhatsApp, which he said indicate a web version i the pipeline.
Paul Durov is a rival of Whatsapp and he is the co-founder of rival messaging app Telegram. He said recent WhatsApp update (v2.11.471) contained ‘WhatsApp Web’ in its code and the code also mentions references to logging in/out of computers as well as tracking user status online.
Whatsapp is owned by Facebook and there is no confirmation from the Facebook or Whatsapp wing to the effect. However, it makes perfect sense as its rivals such as Viber, Telegram, WeChat, and Line have the web version of their products available for web and PC clients.
Currently, WhatsApp has 600 million active users and one-tenth of them in India. Once it goes computer-based, it may gobble the entire Indian online users. The mobile free messaging app, now bought by Facebook for $19 billion, has reached 600 million from 430 million when FaceBook bought the compnay in January.
WhatsApp CEO and founder Jan Koum took to Twitter recently to announce it. “Now serving 600,000,000 monthly active users. Yes, active and registered are very different types of numbers,” he said in the message signed “jan koum” (@jankoum).
The popularity of the app has already sent shivers down the spine of Indian telecom companies, which have paid huge money bags for 2G and 3G spectrum in auctions and in scams that preceded. They have recently approached the regulator Telecom Regulatory Authority of India’s (TRAI’s) for a better level-playing field with WhatsApp, Viber and even Skype.
TRAI is reliably learnt to have been working on a consultation paper for all over the top (OTT) players, including WhatsApp and Skype, which provide same SMS and Phone call services free of cost.
Facebook-owned Whatsapp is likely to capture the big market like India and its huge desktop users, before even the TRAI tries to control the expansion or reach of it to Indian price-conscious consumers.