WhatsApp could soon be challenged by two popular rivals

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WHATSAPP could soon face radical competition from two other popular applications that are used for conversing with others, it has emerged.

WhatsApp is the most popular chat client in the world, surpassing the likes of FacebookMessenger, WeChat and Skype in terms of active monthly users.

In fact, Statista claimed as of October last year the app had 1.5billion active users.

In comparison, Facebook Messenger was said to have 1.3billion in the same period.

One of the reasons for WhatsApp’s laudable success is surely its consistent stream of updates that add new features on a regular basis.

Last year one of the biggest features to arrive on the client was the addition of group calling that allowed up to four people, including the person that initiated the call, to chat with one another.

Discussing the feature at the time, WhatsApp said: “You can make a group call with up to four people total – anytime and anywhere.

“Just start a one-on-one voice or video call and tap the new ‘add participant’ button in the top right corner to add more contacts to the call.

“Group calls are always end-to-end encrypted, and we’ve designed calling to work reliably around the world in different network conditions.”

But now it appears such a feature is going to be challenged by Google Duo that looks set to deliver group calling for up to eight people at once.

Android Police, courtesy of an anonymous source, recently posted alleged screenshots of such a feature being harnessed.

The outlet insisted the tool can be used after a group has been made in the app with all the contacts the user wants to speak with.

It added there does not currently appear to be a way for participants to be added during a group call, meaning everyone needs to join at the start.

A new dark mode for the app as also shown off that could make using Google Duo easier on user eyes overall.


Google Duo looks set to deliver group calling for up to eight people at once (Image: Google)

It is currently unclear when group calling and a dark mode will arrive for the Mountain View firm’s app.

Dark modes have become increasingly prominent in mobile applications, giving users more choice in how they want to view the software in question.


Facebook Messenger could beat WhatsApp to delivering a dark theme (Image: Twitter @wongmjane)

Back in September WABetaInfo, an outlet renowned for digging through WhatsApp code to gain an insight into forthcoming features, stated a dark theme is being worked on for the app.

However, it appears Facebook Messenger could beat WhatsApp to delivering such an aesthetic, according to a new leak.

Twitter user Jane Manchun Wong recently posted images of Facebook Messenger running a new dark mode and claimed the social media giant is “testing” the new feature in “certain countries”.

Although an exact release date for the feature has not been provided, the function was shown to be working as a user would expect, suggesting it may not be long before a mass rollout takes place.

It is unknown when WhatsApp intends to deliver its own dark mode to users.


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