10 WhatsApp Alternatives to Try (Updated)

Not a fan of WhatsApp? Check out free messaging apps that work across iOS, Android, and more.

If you’re a WhatsApp user, you might know that the app isn’t entirely free. For iOS users, a one-time fee of $0.99 is required, while Android users can enjoy the service for free – but only for the first year. After that, an annual fee of $0.99 is charged.

Don’t want to pay for your messaging needs? No worries! We’ve compiled a list of 10 fantastic free messaging apps that serve as excellent alternatives to WhatsApp.

These apps are not just for iOS and Android users. We’ve also found options for those using other mobile operating systems like Blackberry and Windows Phone. So, you can stay connected with friends and family, regardless of the device they’re using. Tired of those constant reminders to renew your WhatsApp subscription? It might be time to consider these alternatives.

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Telegram App Interface

Telegram stands out as a straightforward and secure messaging platform, available across various devices. It boasts high-speed messaging capabilities, thanks to its globally distributed network.

Security is a top priority for Telegram. All chats, group conversations, and media are encrypted. Additionally, the app imposes no restrictions on the size of media files you can send or receive. Plus, you can back up all your conversations in the Telegram cloud for easy access.

Download Telegram for:

iOS Android


Signal App Interface

Signal offers a user-friendly experience with an emphasis on privacy. It allows you to send text, voice, and video messages, as well as make calls to anyone, anywhere in the world.

One of the standout features of Signal is its robust end-to-end encryption, ensuring the privacy of all your communications. The app performs well even on slower networks and offers the flexibility to switch between light and dark themes for a customized experience.

Download Signal for:

iOS Android


Zalo App Interface

Zalo provides a robust messaging experience with a focus on user privacy. It’s also an essential app for travelers in Vietnam. The app supports high-quality video and voice calls, whether you’re connected to WiFi or a 3G network. It also offers a wide range of emoticons and stickers to make your conversations more engaging.

One of the unique features of Zalo is its seamless integration with social media platforms like Facebook, making it easier to connect with your friends and family.

Download Zalo for:

iOS Android


Viber App Interface

Viber operates much like WhatsApp, using your mobile number as your identity. After receiving an access code via SMS, the app scans your contacts to find other Viber users, allowing for immediate connection.

One advantage Viber has over WhatsApp is its call feature. You can make calls to other Viber users as long as your smartphone is connected to the Internet.

Download Viber for:

iOS Android


LINE App Interface

LINE operates by using your phone number to set up an account and then scans your contact list to find other LINE users. One of its standout features is its compatibility with desktop platforms. Once you’ve registered your number with an email account, you can respond to messages using a PC or MacOS program. LINE is also an essential app for travelers in Japan.

Beyond text messaging, LINE offers the ability to make calls to other LINE users, as long as you’re connected to the Internet.

Download LINE for:

iOS Android


KakaoTalk App Interface

KakaoTalk Messenger uses your mobile number to send you a 4-digit verification code as part of its registration process. It then scans your contact list to find other KakaoTalk users, similar to how WhatsApp operates. This app is particularly useful when traveling to South Korea.

The app comes packed with features like group chats, multimedia sharing, and even the ability to make voice calls to other KakaoTalk users, provided you have an Internet connection.

Download KakaoTalk for:

iOS Android

Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger App Interface

Facebook Messenger has been a staple app for both iOS and Android users for quite some time. Since you’re likely already connected with most of your friends on Facebook, it serves as a convenient alternative to WhatsApp.

The only limitation is that it doesn’t allow you to communicate with people who aren’t on Facebook.

Download Facebook Messenger for:

iOS Android


Skype App Interface

Skype recently integrated its contact list with old MSN or Hotmail accounts, reconnecting you with long-lost friends. Beyond the nostalgia, Skype offers free voice calls and text messaging with your approved contacts.

Unlike WhatsApp, Skype requires you to approve contacts before messaging can commence. However, its reliability and stability make it a worthy alternative.

Download Skype for:

iOS Android


Groupme App Interface

Groupme is designed for users who prefer group chats. You sign in using your email and then verify your phone number by receiving an SMS code.

What sets Groupme apart is its unique feature of supporting group messaging over SMS. This is particularly useful for group members without a 3G connection, as they can still participate in the group chat for a nominal fee. Each message sent or received is billed as an SMS to the United States.

Download Groupme for:

iOS Android

Kik Messenger

Kik Messenger App Interface

Kik Messenger allows you to register using your email address and then choose a unique username. The app is straightforward and excels in delivering messages to individuals or groups.

While it lacks voice calling features, it offers all the essential messaging functionalities and is compatible with a wide range of mobile systems, all for free.

Download Kik Messenger for:

iOS Android


WeChat App Interface

WeChat enjoys immense popularity in China and operates similarly to WhatsApp. You initiate the registration process by entering your phone number, followed by a verification code sent via SMS.

The app allows you to connect your Facebook and email accounts for easier discoverability. Additional features include sharing images, WeChat contacts, your current location, and even video chatting capabilities.

Download WeChat for:

iOS Android