The best chat and instant messaging IM client apps for Android

The best chat and instant messaging IM client apps for Android
We can wax poetic about the explosive growth of chat apps until the cows come home, but there's no need to extol their virtues by now, as it is clearly visible how the various instant messaging clients have almost taken over our communication needs already. The IM-craze started way back in ICQ and mIRC times on desktop computers, went through staples like the Yahoo or MSN messengers, then we got the Skype sweep, but now a new crop is taking over, overshadowing the old guard with access to more than 500 million user in the palm of our hands in the case of WhatsApp, for instance.

The chat revolution is not only about chat anymore, though - some of the best Android messaging apps are veritable social networks, complete with profile pages, status messages, media comments and sharing, as well as a smorgasbord of features like group video call that we now take for granted. Some of you are also concerned about privacy in the land of NSA, so a new offshoot of secure messaging apps is getting trendy. It's pretty hard to navigate all that maze, and some would argue that the best communication app is the one your friends are on, but since now we are often using more than one IM application, we've rounded some of the best chat apps for Android to help you choose.

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49 Comments

1. aayupanday

Posts: 582; Member since: Jun 28, 2012

WhatsApp Still Rulez

2. sip1995

Posts: 1771; Member since: Feb 07, 2014

Seems that PA refresh their contract with Samesung and Google....

9. nasznjoka

Posts: 418; Member since: Oct 05, 2012

Window Phones got no people and PA is doing business through traffic and using topics like this one can have high number of views because it covers alot of people hence ITS JUST BUSINESS.

3. sip1995

Posts: 1771; Member since: Feb 07, 2014

Btw Telegram is available on Windows Phone too....

12. joey_sfb

Posts: 6794; Member since: Mar 29, 2012

Good enough reason to avoid it then. Most efficient way to avoid the bottom 5% of winers.

4. NokiaFTW

Posts: 2072; Member since: Oct 24, 2012

I'd buy an Android phone just to chat with that beauty in the pic!

5. AfterShock

Posts: 4146; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

I use ICQs, oh-o time for my SMS, is fun to see people faces when they recognize it.

6. AfterShock

Posts: 4146; Member since: Nov 02, 2012

Time should read, tune.

7. hossamaltarawneh

Posts: 36; Member since: Oct 18, 2013

What? BBM isn't mentioned? Since when fuseMe, kakoo talk and numbuzz is better than BBM? WTH..

14. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

Because BBM ****ONLY**** have 85million MAU (monthly active user) and got stuck in that number, whereas all the messaging platform mention have more than 100 million MAU, some even have as high as 500 million MAU. The problem with BBM were, BBM use some random awkward alphabet/numeric ID that were inconvenience in this decade. It might looks cool for the last decade, but definitely considered dinosaurs technology now.

17. ChocolateSoul

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

BBM is well over 110 million registered users, though. Not including it on this list is complete bull. It's feature-set alone (chat, stickers, BBM Money, video, voice) makes it better than more than half this list, then you can add in its security features and corporate BBM Protected version. Who else has that? Not including BBM is RIDICULOUS. Furthermore, you are saying the only way to join BBM is by PIN and that is FALSE. You can join BBM by PIN, Email, Barcode and NFC. None of these are "dinosaur technology". You don't have any idea what you're talking about.

21. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

correction... BBM has 165 Million REGISTERED USER. But the number that messaging platform use is NOT registered user. They used MONTHLY ACTIVE USER (MAU). and in the last BBRY EARNING REPORT, they announce that they have 85 MILLION MAU. summary in Q1 2014 bb said 110 million registered user, 85 million MAU. in Q2 2014 bb said 165 million registered user, BUT ONLY 85million MAU.

19. BobbyDigital

Posts: 2124; Member since: May 29, 2014

Are you ever going to quit it with your irrational hatred of BlackBerry? And learn correct grammar too. Reading your posts hurts my brain.

23. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

will you quit worshiping bb, the fallen god? Your irrational worship about how great bb were iritating me. As for grammar, sorry. I don't officially went to learn english. I learn english mostly through cartoon since I still in junior high, and now through hollywood movie.

28. ChocolateSoul

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

Will you quit jumping on the 'I Hate BlackBerry' bandwagon as if a few years ago, you weren't using a BlackBerry? You idiotic Android/iOS fanboys act like BlackBerry molested you as a child. It's a damn phone. If you don't like it, move on and use something else. Bashing it constantly is foolish and exposes your lack of maturity.

30. BobbyDigital

Posts: 2124; Member since: May 29, 2014

Junior high school? Well that explains your child-like behavior and irrational stupidity. Grow up junior. There are people out there that like BlackBerry. No matter what you say. It's THEIR CHOICE. NOT YOURS. If you don't like it so what!? You say you respect other people's choice but you always troll BlackBerry articles spewing negative nonsense. Why must you troll EVERY BlackBerry article? Bet you WON'T answer that question. Because then you would have to admit you're nothing more than a troll.

33. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

LOL. Me english is really bad. I was learning english since I (was) still in junior high. That's a decade ago.

8. codemonkey85

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

"Hangouts does video chat, voice calls, group chats, files and media sending, and just about everything else you’d expect, though it falls a bit short in the notifications and especially the theming departments." Hangouts doesn't do voice calling on Android, or file sending beyond pictures. Also, how does it fall short in the notifications? You can customize notification sounds for every individual person or group chat.

10. Rydsmith unregistered

Hangouts absolutely does voice calling on Android, I've accidentally hit that button more than once in the year plus that I've used hangouts.

15. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

What I like about hangout is the convenient when I have more than 1 device. I can use hangout on my phone, then continue on my PC, and then continue on my tablet.... seamlessly.

27. codemonkey85

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

Let me clarify; Hangouts on Android does not do VOIP voice calling. It does, however, do normal carrier-based phone calls to contacts that have a phone number.

29. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

Hangout on android do VOIP with video call through Internet. http://blog.laptopmag.com/how-to-use-google-hangouts-for-android

39. codemonkey85

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

That is a very different proposition - video calls will invariably require and use more bandwidth / data, and you can't make calls to phone numbers from Hangouts for Android.

41. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

You make the video call, then YOU MUTE the video. So, it's a voice call. Google has another product, called google voice that can make calls to phone number, unfortunately only available in United States.

11. PhoneArenaUser

Posts: 5498; Member since: Aug 05, 2011

Skype!

13. sip1995

Posts: 1771; Member since: Feb 07, 2014

It belongs to Microsoft, here promote only Google's products.....

31. BobbyDigital

Posts: 2124; Member since: May 29, 2014

Really? I thought they only promoted Apple products?

16. Totse2k15

Posts: 475; Member since: Feb 11, 2014

I like viber, but they need to add video chat/call. Hangouts sucks!

18. ChocolateSoul

Posts: 3; Member since: Jul 23, 2014

BBM should be on this list. Not including it is a crime! Please fix this glaring omission!

24. WahyuWisnu

Posts: 1001; Member since: May 29, 2014

BBM is not on the list for 1 obvious reason... IT'S NOT THE BEST IM client for android. PERIOD. Including it is a crime!!

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

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