Jan Koum, WhatsApp’s CEO, said that the company will make the shift sometime this year for new users only. His interview with Dutch journalist Alexander Klopping was obtained by TechCrunch who highlighted some other key takeaways as well.
– On a desktop version: “We get that question asked a lot,” Koum said of desktop apps. “We feel strongly that the world is moving to mobile and [so] we want to be mobile-only. 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.”
– On live streaming video: “definitely not this year.”
– On exit strategies in general: “We don’t discuss exit strategies internally,” Koum said. “A lot of companies in Silicon Valley talk about exit strategies. The way we look at it, is it’s like entering a marriage and talking about divorce. We just don’t have one. We don’t have one because we don’t plan or want to think about it. We want to focus on good products.”
– On cannibalizing carrier revenues: “We actually have really good relationships with a lot of carriers. We’re doing some revolutionary stuff. The world is switching to data [and we have] some good partnerships, for example with Three in Hong Kong.” That partnership gives Three subscribers access to WhatsApp when they travel internationally for the equivalent of about $6/day. “We understand that a lot of people are switching to our product instead of SMS but we look at it as evolution.”
You can purchase WhatsApp Messenger from the App Store for $0.99.
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