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WhatsApp iPhone app to introduce subscription fees later this year

Luke Johnson



Bringing iOS in line with the company’s Android and BlackBerry offerings, WhatsApp has confirmed that it is to introduce a subscription fee to its iPhone application later this year.

A globally dominant cross-platform messaging service, WhatsApp is to rejig its iOS pricing structure, scrapping the current 69 pence purchase fee in favour of a new annual subscription charge that will help increase the company’s revenues.

A plan already implemented on the services’ Windows Phone 8, BlackBerry and Android applications, the WhatsApp iOS subscription charges, which will affect both iPhone, iPad and iPod touch users, have been confirmed as being set to be introduced within the coming months.

Although final details on the iOS subscription charges have yet to be revealed, WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum has stated: “We’re relaxed on dates, but definitely this year. It’s on the road map.”

WhatsApp, which handles a staggering 17 billion daily messages and has 100 million users on Google’s Android platform alone, currently charges a $1 annual subscription fee for none iOS users, a fee that is expected to be the same for future iPhone and iPad users.

Seemingly set to affect new users only, Koum has revealed that the multiplatform subscription charges are being introduced as the company “want to keep things simple.”

As well as confirming that an iOS subscription model is set to be introduced, Koum, speaking with a Dutch journalist, has revealed that despite a number of calls for such a service, no WhatsApp desktop app is currently in the works.

“We feel strongly that the world is moving to mobile and [so] we want to be mobile-only,” Koum said. “Your phone is with you all the time, and desktop is to many becoming a secondary experience. [So] our answer is no, not anytime soon.”

Would you be happy to pay an annual subscription charge to use WhatsApp on your iPhone or iPad or would this put you off the messaging service? Let us know via the TrustedReviews Twitter and Facebook feeds or through the comment boxes below.

Via: TechCrunch

Gavin Martin

March 19, 2013, 12:35 pm

$1 a year? That's outrageous, the cheek of it!


March 19, 2013, 1:21 pm

I'm waiting for someone to explain what the point of Whatsapp is. Why not just use gmail chat?


March 19, 2013, 1:55 pm

I think their model is great. Completely free for a year so you adopt it and become dependant on it then a very small yearly fee, which by that point you won't grudge paying :)

At first I really didn't see the point in it when all of my regular contacts have unlimited free texts anyway, but when my friend moved to Belgium and with my sister in Ireland every other weekend it makes sense there. It is annoying to open up Android messaging instinctively only to remember I need to contact them via WhatsApp though...

soni manutd

March 19, 2013, 3:43 pm

i didnt think whatsapp was on ipad already, the free version ?

Tessier Stirlo Ashpool

March 20, 2013, 7:35 am

i'd dump it, cause whatsapp is terrible.. a terrible app for TERRIBLE PEOPLE

ki young song

March 21, 2013, 8:08 am

All netizen does't like pay for mobile app, it's will be a wall to use it. not good idea.


March 22, 2013, 10:01 am

Some people prefer not to provide Google with detailed information of EVERYTHING about them (who they are, where they are, what they are talking about).. Most of the people I've talked to who use Whatsapp just find it convenient without seeming to be invasive - they COULD be wrong but it's a matter of perception


March 22, 2013, 10:01 am

Doesn't the article say the annual charge model is only going to apply to new iOS users?


April 18, 2013, 10:57 pm

Wasn't even aware of Gmail chat and I consider myself to be a techie. That could be part of the reason...

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