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Messaging App Shift 📱

Messaging App Shift 📱
February 8, 2021

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As Facebook-owned Whatsapp is shifting towards a data-sharing model with its parent company, many of its users are searching for alternative messaging applications that won’t listen in on private chats. Meanwhile, messaging applications, especially those with video capabilities, are thriving due to the pandemic. Aside from work reasons, according to research, 73% of users use video chat applications to connect with friends and family and 85% say they would continue to do so even after the lockdowns are lifted. 

  • Signal, the non-profit chat platform, offers what the media and users say is the most secure chat service of all messaging platforms. Because of security concerns, more people are flocking to the service, and it has racked up 20 million monthly active users globally as of the end of 2020. 
  • Viber is a messaging service that brags about its end-to-end encryption capabilities, as well as its chat groups that allow up to 250 participants. It also has a landline function that lets you place calls for a low price to users without the app. It was acquired in 2014 by Japanese E-commerce company Rakuten.
  • Telegram is another common chat platform that often gets grouped with Signal as an alternative to Whatsapp, although it is a for-profit company. The service has been getting some bad publicity lately as the riots in the Capitol have led to an increased usage of Telegram by far-right groups and because it is not operated by Big Tech. The platform offers the same type of chat and video services with end-to-end encryption capabilities as the other apps.
  • Discord is a group-chatting platform that was popular among gamers but has since become a general use platform for communities. The platform allows users to chat within their own “server” community and even voice/video chat, as well as live stream games and other programs from their computers.
  • Houseparty became a trend, especially among millennials during the pandemic, as a way to host virtual parties and has jumped from 10MM daily active users in December 2019 to 200MM in March 2020. The group video chat application was acquired in June 2019 by Fortnite game maker Epic Games.
Red hot IPOs or cooling money-losing businesses?
Many of the recently IPO-ed companies are not actually that profitable or not profitable at all. Take a deeper look to compare some of the big names that have recently IPOed and how well or not so well each is doing. 
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Short-selling firm Hindenburg Research flags Clover Health, the telehealth startup that merged with Chamath Palihapitiya-backed SPAC, as a broken business. Clover Health responds, but its stock still drops. 
[Business Insider]
Since last week, PrivCo has added:
204,895 Companies | 176 Funding Activities | 69 M&A Deals

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