Whatsapp is the little messaging app that has taken the world by storm – it has quickly become one of the first apps most users install on any smartphone. Whatsapp is currently sending 17 billion messages daily, much more than Apple’s iMessage which sends “only” 2 billion. Until now Whatsapp has been using a subscription based pricing model of a dollar per year on a lot of its platforms. But the iPhone has stuck to a once off $1 price.
But now the developers behind Whatsapp have made public that they intend to move iPhones away from this pricing strategy as well. So within this year, Whatsapp will become a free app, that charges you a dollar after a year’s use. Current users of the app (who have paid the once off $1 for the app) will be informed when they will be charged as well.
The new subscription model would apply to new users, Koum said, and would likely follow the same pricing structure as its other apps, which are free for the first year and then cost $1/year, compared to the single, for-life $0.99 purchase that users make on iOS today. “œWe‘re relaxed on dates, but definitely this year. It‘s on the road map,“ Koum said.
Apparently the change is for a good reason – they want to move to a generic pricing plan across all platforms.