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For Dummies — WhatsAppGROUPS

WhatsApp groups For Dummies

This is a free messaging service specifically designed for use on cell phones and other mobile devices. It can make regular phone calls and video calls from one person to another. It can send images in text, videos, GIF, user location, phone and messaging contact lists, voice notes, and audio files using preexisting cell phone numbers on the device.When WhatsApp was started, users were only able communicate with one person or group of individuals to one another, but in 2017 the WhatsApp groups said there would bea business application to allowbusinesses to engage in customer service and other uses.All data is encrypted from one end to the other.It also contains a program named Status, which permits uploading of videos and photos through a 24-hour feed visible to all contacts selected by the user, similar to Instagram, ShapChat, and Facebook.

WhatsApp Inc. has its headquarters in Mountain View, CAand wasacquired by Facebook in 2014. By 2016, WhatsApp had a user base of more than one billion, becoming the most used messaging service.

History

2009–2014

WhatsApp was started in 2009 by Jason Koum and Brian Acton who worked together at Yahoo!.They separated from Yahoo! in 2007. For the next few years, they subsisted on Koum’s $400,000 separation pay from Yahoo!. In 2009, following the purchase of an iPhone and seeing that the capabilities of the iPhone were destined to need an almost unlimited selection of apps,Koum, a friend of his, Alex Fishman, and Actonwould discuss many issues. They recognized all their ideas would be impossible without a developer of iPhone programs.Fishman discovered a Russian developer,Igor Solomennikov, who developed WhatApp’s first few apps.In2009, WhatsApp Inc. was started in California. However, luck wasn’t always on their side. Initial incarnations of the apps operated in fits and starts and were basically useless for anyone to use with any sophistication.After a short period of trial and error, the first few apps in the WhatsApp arsenal were ready for deployment and were very successful.

WhatsApp changed in structure from being free of charge to a service charging a small fee in an attempt to slow the growth of the company. In 2009, WhatsApp enabled users to transmit photos with the iPhone. By 2011, WhatsApp was on the list of the top 20 apps in Apple’s American App Store.

By 2011, there was only one investor in WhatsApp and they were paid around$8 million for up to 15 percent of the corporation; albeit after a great deal of negotiation.

Facebook subsidiary (2014–present)

In 2014, following more venture financing reached a $1.5 billion valuation, Facebook stated thatit was buying all of WhatsApp for $19 billion, the most expensive and largest purchase of a venture invested corporation in history. The venture capital investor netted almost50 times its starting investment.Facebook paid close to $4 billion in liquid financing and quickly there wasa $12 billion value in Facebook shares. Anadditional $3 billionunits was given to WhatsApp’s founders, Acton and Kuem. Employee stock was vested more than four years before closing. Shortly after the announcement, WhatsApp users reported a dramaticinterruption in service leading to criticism and anger across social media. This service interruption caused many users to try other messaging services. Telegrampurported saw approximately 8 million more users of its app. Line claimed 2 million new users.

In 2014, Facebook creator Mark Zuckerberg stated the acquisition of WhatsApp was comparable to the Internet.org program. Zuckerberg wanted to put out some basic Internet services free of charge through a social networking service like Facebook but be able to search for anything on the web.Many users wereunable to afford the services currently offered bysmartphones anddidn’t see why they would pay for the variety of data services offered when they’d never use them. This would providea foundation as to why they should pay for more sophisticated services.

Shortly after the announcement of Facebook’s acquisition of WhatsApp, work started on the introduction of voice call use. Koum would develop the service and the initial phones would be made in Germany with plans to have WhatsApp worldwide cell phone use as soon as possible.

In 2014, WhatsApp was the most used messaging service app with close to 600 million regular users.By early 2015, WhatsApp reported 700 million users with more than 30 billion texts being sent daily.In April 2015, Forbes magazine predicted the telecommunications industry would lose close to $386 billion even with services like WhatsApp and Skype.WhatsApp had more than 800 million active users at that time. By 2015, the user population was around900 million and by 2016 it had blossomed to one billion.

In 2015, the WhatsApp Android applications started to make links to the messenger called Telegram unable to clicked or copied.This block was introduced on purposerather than a bug or virus. The source code of the Android, which recognized theTelegram web location, had been identified.URLs with the keyword “telegram” as a domain were explicitly and actively blocked.This risked being thought of as outside of the regular practice of competition and wasn’t explained byWhatsApp.

On early 2016, one of WhatsApp’s founders, Jan Koum, stated that WhatsApp would eliminated the $1 annual user fee to continue to make the service available tothose users who did not have a credit card to pay for the service. He also stated WhatsApp would not show third party advertisements and replace them with new features to enhance business use.

By the middle of 2016, close to 100 million regular phone calls were made every day usingWhatsApp, according to their blog.

By the end of 2016, WhatsApp introduced the trial of asimple verification service for customers who used Android. In accessing this new feature, users could use an email address for moreprivacy and security.At the same time, Facebook stopped usingWhatsApp informationto enable European advertising.

In early 2017, WhatsApp introduced the new Status capability comparable to that being offered by Snapchat and Facebook.

In the middle of 2017, the European Commissionfined Facebook€110 million because of “misleading” information regarding the takeover of WhatsApp in 2014. The Commission stated when Facebook took over WhatsApp, it represented that it was not possible to combine WhatsApp and Facebook user information.By the summer of 2016,WhatsApp began allowing the sharing of thisuser information with Facebook allowing phone numbers for certain Facebook generated advertising. Facebook admitted to the misrepresentation but retorted that the errors in their 2014 filings were not done on purpose.

In the late fall of 2017,WhatsApp introduced the trial of a futurebusiness feature to allowbusinesses to provide customer service to certain users.Two international airlinesannounced participation in the trial period.Both airlines previously used the customer service program provided by Facebook.

Client markets

Until the end of 2016,WhatsApp advertised its service to be a solution for a certain user with only a smartphone to exchange voice calls with another single user. They also targeted small businesses to allow them to use WhatsApp to utilize their servicesto communicate with customers through call centers. However, at the end of the fall of 2017,WhatsApp confirmed the rumor that they had developed and were testing new tools for business use of WhatsApp.

Platform support

After several months of trials, the WhatsApp application was launched in the latter part of 2009 exclusively on the iPhone and in the App Store.In early 2010, WhatsApp added the use of BlackBerry smartphones.Services soon spread to enable the Symbian OS platform to be WhatsApp compatible in the middle of 2010 and for the Android OS in the late summer of 2010. In the late summer of 2011, trials were initiated for the Nokia’s OS Series 40.Shortly thereafter, support for the Microsoft phonewas announced followed by compatibility with the BlackBerry 10in early 2013. In the early spring of 2015, WhatsApp’s compatibility with the Samsung TizenOS was started. Limited services were available for theMeeGo Nokia N9titledWazappandthe ability to serve theMaemo Nokia N900titledYappari.

In the late summer of 2014, WhatsApp developed and distributed an update to the Android-compatible app supporting Android Wear watches.

In 2014, the trial of an open source addition namedWhatsApp-purple for the Pitgin XMPPenabled the use ofWhatsApp on Windows or Linux PCs.WhatsAppthen blocked phone numbers connectingWhatsApp to the recipient device.

In the early portion of 2015, WhatsApp introduced itsWhatsApp Web to be used in many regularly used web browser connections.

In the early portion of 2016, WhatsApp announced stopping service support forBlackBerry devices, older versions of Android 2.2, iOS 6, Series 40 and Symbian S60,and Windows Phone 7.0at the end of 2016. BlackBerry and Series 40 and Symbian applications were eventually allowed to these devices in the middle of 2017 with support for the BlackBerry and Series 40 again available through the end of 2017, and Symbian was dropped.

WhatsApp Web

WhatsApp was developed for PCs through the web under the WhatsApp names Web in the early portion of 2015. The actual launchwas made by Koum on a Facebook page. The WhatsApp handset still had to be connected to the Internet for use of the browser application. All ordinary web browsers were allowed to use WhatsApp’s interface and was the default setting on Android systems.

In the early portion of 2015, use of the desktop service was restricted to BlackBerry, Windows Phone, and Android customers.There was then additional support developed for the Symbian Nokia S60, Nokia Series 40, and iOS.

An unsponsored offshoot called WhatsAppTime was then developed. This was launched as a standard Win32 platform for a user’s PC and supported announcementsusing the Windows notification system.There were comparable services for the macOS, such asChitChat, and multiple versions found in the App Store.

Windows and Mac

In the middle of 2016, the WhatsApp platform was available for the Windows andmacOS software systems. WhatsApp currently does not work on desktop computers.Comparable to the WhatsApp Web service, the app used with a user’s mobile device can be downloaded from the website. It can be used with OS versions of OS 10.9 and Windows 8.

Technical

WhatsApp is used with a specially developedversion of the ordinary Extensible Message and Presence Protocol (XMPP).Once this is installed, it is able to create a user account using acellphone number as the username.

WhatsApp’s software examines all smartphone numbers from the address book containingthe central database of WhatsApp users to add new numbers to the user’s contact list in WhatsApp. Android and Nokia Series 40 devices previously used an MD5 version of the phone’s IMEI as the password and the iOS service used a particular user’s Wi-Fi MAC address rather than IMEI. A 2012 update has since allowed random creation of passwords with the server functions.

In the early portion of 2015, WhatsApp services included a voice-activated calling feature. This enabled WhatsApp to contact a unique user population not otherwise targeted.In the latter portion of 2016, WhatsApp developed avideo-based calling capability for those users using Windows Phone, iPhone, and Androiddevices.

Multimedia messages are sent by uploading an audio or video input that is subsequently sent to a compatible server. A link is then sent to the content along with a thumbnail applicable Base64 encoded image.

WhatsApp follows a unique mechanism for sending and replying to messages between users. Upon sendinga message, it is introduced to and stored in a WhatsApp server. The server then acknowledges receiving the message.Once receiptis verified, the server sends the message and it is not available in the database of the server. The WhatsApp server only keeps the information in the database for 30 days if it is not deliverable.

End-to-end encryption

In the latter portion of 2014, Open Whisper Systems partnered with WhatsApp to deliver end-to-end encryption through incorporation of the protocol used in Signal.The encryption protocol used in Signalwould then be used bythe variousWhatsApp client platforms.Open Whisper Systems had already used the encryption protocol with the most recent WhatsApp services for Android. Support for other types of group and media messaging and their key verifications would follow shortly thereafter. WhatsApp acknowledged the partnership to the media, but there was no official broadcast or printed description of the encryption feature on the WhatsApp website.In the spring of 2015, the German magazine Heise Security used ARP jokingto confirm the implementation of the protocol for one Android to another messaging.WhatsApp messaging in iPhones and iOS were still user-to-user encrypted.There was concern that regular users ofWhatsAppcould not determine the difference between the new end-to-end encryption and regular messaging. In the spring of 2016, WhatsApp and Open Whisper Systems finished the installation of end-to-end encryption to all communication services on WhatsApp. Users could now confirm their communication keys.Users were also provided the option to enable the use of trusting messaging on the first use relying on the sender’s key changes.WhatsApp messaging is currently encrypted through Signal Protocol.WhatsApp services are filtered through SRTP and all client-to-server channels are separately encrypted.

WhatsApp Payments

Payments made to WhatsApp are placed with a peer to peer money transfer system initially launched in India. Indian licensing authorities had grantedWhatsAppthe ability to partner with more than one bank since the middle of 2017 to enable users to make payments while in the app and enable account-to-WhatsApp transfers. Transfers for payments are also allowed from the mobile app without identification details of the banks used by WhatsApp.

Security and privacy

In the early portion of 2017, it was reported by Tobias Boelter, a journalistic researcher, that he determined that the WhatsApp policy of requiring encryption of messages that were not delivered without such notice from the user directed to receive the message constituted a serious deception on the part ofWhatsApp. WhatsApp could disseminate, or be directed to disseminate, the information in particular messages. Representatives of Open Whisper Systems and WhatsApp opposed this finding. An updated article, by Boelter himself, explained the detail of specific vulnerability in greater specificity. In the middle of2017, the editor ofThe Guardian newspaper, Paul Chadwick, said that The Guardian was incorrect in reporting that the WhatsApp messaging service had a privacy issue serious enough to constitute a breach of freedom of speech. Chadwick went on to say that, since The Guardian publication, WhatsApp had increased user privacy with a newly available two-factor verification system introduced in early 2017.

Business model

As a reaction to Facebook’s purchase of WhatsApp in 2014, it was wondered by some whether or not WhatsApp’s $1 per year user fee was needed for WhatsApp’s long-term survival.It was thought that WhatsApp had profited by taking advantage of a special arrangement in mobile phone carrier pricing. In response, some carriers made SMS available for sale. It was easy for WhatsApp to determine a way to duplicate SMS data and then make the data available to mobile phone customers for a $1 yearly fee.

In the early portion of 2016, Jan Koum,one of WhatsApp’s founders, announced that the messaging service would no longer charge the $1 annual subscription fee so as to eliminatea barrier presented to particular users unable to pay for the service without a credit card.He also stated that WhatsApp would no longer display any third party advertisements and instead develop new features including the ability for businesses to communicate with their customers.

Terrorism

In the latter part of 2015, Islamic State terrorists were found to have usedWhatsApp to plan for the November 2015 attacks in Paris.ISIL also usedWhatsApp services to traffic in sex slavery.

In early 2017, the U.K. Secretary of State questioned the acceptability of encryption used in messaging tools like WhatsApp.It was reported that Khalid Masood hadused WhatsApp before perpetrating the Westminster attack in2017. The U.K. Secretary of State publicly called for police and intelligence agencies to share resources and information to prevent any such attacks in the future.

In the early spring of 2017, the terrorist who perpetrated the Stockholm incident reportedly exchanged messages with fellow ISIL members before and after the 2017 attack. The content of the messages included discussion of the assembly of explosive devices and confession from the terrorist as to his participation in the incident.

Scams

In the middle portion of 2016, a few WhatsApp users reported being tricked into purchasing an application called WhatsApp Gold. This application was determined to be a scam targeting the users’ phones with a virus. GB WhatsApp was another application considered to be related to the WhatsApp Gold scam.A message appeared on the user’s screen promising the ability to see theWhatsApp information found in others’conversations or contact lists. The latter became the most popular virus perpetrated against a customer who used the application in Brazil. Since the latter part of 2016, approximately 1.5 million people have lost a substantial amount of money with these scams.

Bans of whatsapp

China

In the late fall of 2017, users in China reported brief disruptions in the WhatsApp service. Some security researchers reported this to The New York Times and the particular offending portions of the problems in China were completely blocked by WhatsApp.

Iran

On in the middle of 2014, Iran announced that it was blockingWhatsApp services to their residents. WhatsApp owner and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg was determined to bean American Zionist as reported byAbdolsamadKhorramabadi, of the Iranian Committee on Internet Crimes. Iranian president Hassan Rouhani then ordered the country to stop the filtering ofWhatsApp.


Why use whatsapp?

 

    • FEES: WhatsApp group uses your phone’s already loaded webaccess, including Wi-Fi, to allow the exchange of messages between family and friends without having to pay for each call one at a time. WhatsApp charges no subscription fee.
    • CALLS: You may call allyour friends and family free of charge with the calling features onWhatsAppeven if you call someone in another country. WhatsApp uses thesmartphone’s web access rather than your particular cellular plan’s voice minutes.
    • WHATSAPP’S DESKTOP WEB: You can also use your computer’s web browser to give and to getWhatsApp messages.
    • INTERNATIONAL CALL CHARGES: There are no extra charges to send international messages through WhatsApp.
    • USERNAMES AND PINS: You no longer need to remember yet another username and PIN combination.WhatsApp works with your phone number and interfaces easily with your most recent address additions.
    • LOGGING IN: With WhatsApp, you’re always logged in so you don’t miss messages. No more confusion about whether you’re logged in or logged out.
    • QUICKCONTACT CONNECTION: Your address book is used to quickly and easily connect you with your contacts who have WhatsApp so there’s no need to add hard-to-remember usernames.

 

  • OFFLINE USE: Even if you don’t receive your notifications or turn off your device, WhatsApp stores your messages and displays them when you התחב/י the next time.