Over the years, there have been several forms of communication on our mobile devices; email, text and voice calling being the main ones. In our increasingly fast paced, connected world, instant messaging apps have risen above the rest. The convenience of this form of communication takes up a huge slice of our time and that will only continue in to the future.
Lumia Conversations have gone into detail about some of the instant messaging apps available on Windows phone. All of which are well supported on a wide variety of platforms:
Skype will seamlessly integrate with the People hub on you phone. This app enables you to conveniently instant message, call or voice call your contacts. The instant messaging feature allows you to send text, photos, emoticons, location, drawings and video messages.
Skype is available on a wide variety of platforms. Microsoft acquired it from Ebay in 2011 for $1.9 billion.
This Facebook owned app is currently used by almost 800 million mobile users on average. You can communicate with Facebook friends without needing the dedicated Facebook app. It will show you when contacts are online when they see your messages and supports stickers. You can also group share and photo share.
Messenger was originally integrated into the Facebook app as a chat feature. In 2012, it was made into a separate app without the need for a Facebook username. Now, this app it to compete with the likes of WhatsApp.
Here we have another behemoth of the messaging world with 800 million active users. Conveniently you use your mobile phone number to sign up, and it will add any of your contacts that also use WhatsApp. As ever, you can send photos, videos, location, voice and text messages. The latest version includes WhatsApp Calling, which lets you make free voice calls.
This app helped make instant messaging the phenomenon it is today. Whatsapp, created by two former Yahoo! employees received its name because it sounded so much like "What's up".
Viber can also use your phone number to sign up quickly and easily. It allows you to share location, photos, emoticons, and cute stickers. Viber allows you to change backgrounds that can make identifying family members or groups easier. Also, the app allows you to interact in a similar way to walkie talkies, with Hold & Talk.
Viber was originally released on iPhone as a direct competitor to Skype. A pre-release then appeared on Android but was restricted to 50,000 users. It appeared on Nokia only devices for Windows Phone in 2012.
With the increasing trend of using stickers in chat apps, LINE has you well covered. It offers sticker sets and characters unique to the app. You can also send text, photos, videos, voice messages, location and voice calls. Recently LINE purchased MixRadio the streaming service app.
LINE was first launched in Japan in 2011. Two years later it had 200 million users. By 2013, it was Japans largest social network.