Finally! Whatsapp removes $1 annual subscription fee


Since forever, Whatsapp Messenger has been charging its users a humble annual fee ($1 or £1, depending on market) due after the first year of usage. This ends today: the Facebook-owned messenger goes completely free and slashes any and all annual fees.

The annual fee for the right to use Whatsapp has been a relic of the past that seemed particularly strange in a global market full of free solutions like Facebook Messenger, Skype, Viber and countless others.

Whatsapp explains that the official reason for removing the annual fee is that many of its users across the globe don't even have a credit/debit card, and are afraid they might lose their conversations and access to their preferred messenger. This is definitely more of a deterring factor than it is promoting healthy growth.

Question now remains how Whatsapp will monetize its huge user base. Whatsapp explains that there will be no third-party ads (which would be a huge turn-off for most users), and instead the company plans to bring new functionality to allow customers to communicate with businesses they care about: it would be possible to contact your bank via Whatsapp, for instance, if you are worried about a fraudulent transaction, or check with an air carrier about the status of a flight.

Acquired by Facebook in late 2014 for a whopping $22 billion, Whatsapp is one of the world's most popular messenger clients, second only to Facebook Messenger in terms of spread. It is available on a vast range of platforms, from Android and iPhone, to Windows Phone, BlackBerry OS and even the dated Symbian and Nokia S40 platforms.


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33 Comments

1. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

Never paid it... It kept extending my free deadline...

2. mahima

Posts: 739; Member since: Nov 20, 2014

me too...best app ever. Period.

19. pegasso

Posts: 285; Member since: Nov 27, 2011

yup, it's the same here...

31. KyleRiemen

Posts: 170; Member since: Oct 29, 2014

Nothing is for free, you always pay for it, maybe not with money, but you do pay for it.

32. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

[read] "never paid any money for it"

33. andynaija

Posts: 1261; Member since: Sep 08, 2012

Lol how were you extending the deadline?

3. Tizo101

Posts: 564; Member since: Jun 05, 2015

I doubt anyone has paid before, at least in my country.

10. SuperAndroid507

Posts: 361; Member since: Jan 06, 2014

Same case here, never heard of anyone who paid where I live, it kept extending the free service 1 to 2 months before expiration.

4. Evil_Assassin

Posts: 4; Member since: Jan 18, 2016

But what about the people who paid in advance?

5. villagerguyz

Posts: 96; Member since: Jul 22, 2015

WhatsApp won't give refunds.

24. g2a5b0e unregistered

It cost them $1. They can deal with it.

26. ullokey

Posts: 179; Member since: Jul 28, 2015

I could buy myself a Chicken nuggets burger at BK with the 0,99 cents :D

29. g2a5b0e unregistered

Cool story, bro. Go buy me one too while you're at it.

34. Evil_Assassin

Posts: 4; Member since: Jan 18, 2016

I paid years in advance :-( whatever ... its gone XD

6. nebula

Posts: 1009; Member since: Feb 20, 2015

My guess they will monetize it via selling consumer info mining habits, getting access to the phone and data in general.

12. bucky

Posts: 3790; Member since: Sep 30, 2009

bingo.

7. der_damo

Posts: 213; Member since: Sep 16, 2014

finally - but it's okay if other services charge, lol.

8. manav33

Posts: 5; Member since: Jan 18, 2016

cool in order to earn profit now they gonna sell user data to more government agency

9. tech2

Posts: 3487; Member since: Oct 26, 2012

Correction in first line, its £0.69 in UK and not £1.

11. avalon2105

Posts: 352; Member since: Jul 12, 2014

Great, now it's going to turn into Viber with BS sticker sales and other c**p. As for paying, WhatsApp would always send me a massage "Enjoy your additional free year of service" or something similar whenever I entered last month of my free use. Been using it for over 4 year without paying.

13. amjath

Posts: 1; Member since: Jan 18, 2016

What about the one who have paid for the service? refund as google credits?

14. flavius22

Posts: 218; Member since: Aug 23, 2015

was perfect but lately, I find it unreliable, sometimes the messages aren't instant and i get them only when i unlock my phone. I think there;s a problem with the app rather then my phone (Samsung S6).

18. buccob

Posts: 2972; Member since: Jun 19, 2012

That seems to be your phone's configuration... See if you have a battery saving setting or maybe "smart alert" that only notifies you when you pick it up...

15. miketer

Posts: 527; Member since: Apr 02, 2015

No matter what, a $ well deserved.

16. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

Never Used Whatsapp Before Perhaps I'll Give It A Go Now.

20. sipha

Posts: 440; Member since: May 12, 2012

Lol. it's always been free!!

23. Arch_Fiend

Posts: 3951; Member since: Oct 03, 2015

The App Has Always Been Free Just Not The Service.

28. JunitoNH

Posts: 1946; Member since: Feb 15, 2012

As I understand it. Useless for most, unless your friends download it too, or/and you have family overseas. Otherwise hangouts gets the job done. You can even send files over WIFI.

17. Cyberchum

Posts: 1086; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

It's almost 6 years since I started using the platform and I haven't paid a dime. Can't believe some actually did.

21. hortizano

Posts: 294; Member since: May 22, 2013

Yes, but at what price..??

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