12 Best WhatsApp Alternative Apps You Can Use In 2024

WhatsApp Alternative Apps: Top Choices for Android and iPhone Users

WhatsApp Alternative Apps, a widely used video calling and messaging app owned by Facebook, boasts a user-friendly interface and global popularity, with over 2 billion users in 180 countries. The app is praised for its reliability, privacy features, and simplicity, making it accessible even to those less tech-savvy. Users appreciate that WhatsApp is free to use, requiring only a stable internet connection and a smartphone.

In addition to mobile devices, WhatsApp can be accessed on laptops and PCs after a simple authentication process. With a 4.7 out of 5-star rating on the Google Play Store and 10.4 million ratings, the app continues to dominate the messaging landscape.

Since its founding in 2009, WhatsApp has grown into one of the most prevalent apps globally, surpassing even Facebook Messenger in user numbers. Facebook acquired WhatsApp for $19 billion in 2014, solidifying its position as a communication giant.

However, a new privacy policy introduced in January 2021 stirred controversy, requiring users to share personal details with Facebook. To continue using WhatsApp after February 8, 2021, users must agree to these terms, allowing Facebook access to data such as phone numbers, status messages, profile names, and IP addresses.

Despite its popularity, WhatsApp may not appeal to everyone due to its design or privacy concerns. For those seeking more personal or secure messaging alternatives, here are 12 of the best WhatsApp alternative apps to consider in 2023.

Characteristics of Safe Messaging Applications

Secure messaging apps prioritize protecting user communications while ensuring a seamless user experience through essential features and functionalities:

  1. End-to-End Encryption (E2EE): These apps employ E2EE, a private communication system that encrypts messages using public key cryptography.
  2. User Authentication: Ensures security through identity verification processes such as multifactor (MFA) and two-factor authentication (2FA), allowing access only to authorized users for private messages.
  3. Open Source: Ideally, a secure messaging app should have its code made public, enabling experts and users to review the platform’s security measures and identify any potential flaws.
  4. Rich Media: To replace regular unsecured messaging apps effectively, secure alternatives should offer rich messaging features, including text, images, videos, GIFs, and stickers.
  5. Self-Destruct and Expirations: A truly secure messaging service incorporates features that allow message destruction, preventing recipients from saving messages against the sender’s wishes.
  6. HIPAA-Compliant: While not essential for all users, healthcare organizations should consider HIPAA compliance when selecting a messaging app to meet specific security requirements.

The following list showcases secure messaging apps that leverage some or all of these features to enhance user privacy.

Cybersecurity Advice to ensure the Security of Messages

To enhance the security of your messages, even when using secure messaging services, consider adopting the following cybersecurity best practices:

  1. Avoid Public Wi-Fi: Public Wi-Fi networks are often unsecured, exposing your device and messages to potential hackers. If you must use public Wi-Fi, employ a VPN to safeguard your internet connection and maintain privacy.
  2. Verify Identities: Before sharing sensitive information, verify the identity of the recipient to ensure confidential data reaches the intended person.
  3. Implement Two-Factor Authentication (2FA): Enhance security by enabling 2FA, which adds an extra layer of protection against cybercriminals attempting to log into your messaging app.
  4. Exercise Caution with Links: Refrain from clicking on suspicious links, as they may be part of phishing schemes designed to download malware onto your device. Malware can compromise your personal information and security.
  5. Enable Self-Destructing Messages: Utilize features like self-destructing messages to automatically delete sent messages, preventing unauthorized users from accessing sensitive information.
  6. Report Suspicious Activity: If you suspect unauthorized access to your phone, device, or account, promptly report it to the relevant vendor or local law enforcement to address potential security breaches.
  7. Utilize Security Software: Employ robust security software, such as Norton 360 Deluxe, to detect and mitigate threats early. Features like a VPN can further secure your device and protect your communications from potential hackers.

By combining these best practices, you can significantly enhance the privacy and security of your messages.

Protect every conversation you have online

Ensure the security of all your online communications by actively repelling potential attackers instead of merely hiding from them. A robust approach to safeguarding your messages involves preventing unauthorized access to your device. Consider reinforcing your device’s security with Norton 360 Deluxe, a comprehensive solution offering multiple features and capabilities.

Norton 360 Deluxe provides layered protection, creating a formidable defense against hackers. It goes beyond conventional security measures by incorporating a built-in VPN. This VPN encrypts the information you send and receive online, irrespective of the messaging app you use. By utilizing Norton 360 Deluxe, you establish a proactive defense strategy to safeguard your online communications effectively.

Top 12 WhatsApp Alternative Apps in 2024

WhatsApp Alternative Apps

If you’re seeking a change or, more specifically, a reliable alternative to WhatsApp, you’ve come to the right destination! This article will explore the top 12 best alternatives to WhatsApp in the year 2024.

Presented below are some of the top secure messaging services available today, listed in no particular order. Let’s delve into key information about each of these services.

1. Signal

A snapshot displaying a conversation between users on the Signal app. Signal stands out as a complimentary messaging application that secures user communications through end-to-end encryption (E2EE) and the open-source Signal Protocol. This protocol outlines procedures governing the exchange of data between apps or computers. Signal empowers users to privately share voice chats and messages, providing a robust defense against hackers and advertisers. Notably, Signal maintains a commitment to user privacy, refusing to disclose private information even when faced with warrants from government agencies such as the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI).

Price: Free

Compatibility: Android and iOS

Signal boasts several standout features, including:

  1. End-to-End Encryption
  2. Screenshot Blocker
  3. Disappearing Messages
  4. Single-View Media
  5. Incognito Keyboard
  6. Rich Media

These features collectively contribute to Signal’s reputation as a secure and privacy-focused messaging platform.

Pros Cons
User-friendly interface Requires a phone number for sign-up
Strong commitment to user privacy Occasional intermittent message delivery issues
Robust encryption technology

2. Session

A snapshot displaying conversations between users on the Session app. Session, an encrypted messaging application, serves as an alternative to Zoom for some businesses hosting private work meetings. This tool ensures the security of communications transmitted on both mobile devices and computers. Session goes the extra mile by utilizing onion routing, adding an additional layer of protection to user data. Moreover, Session guarantees a non-collection policy for metadata, safeguarding private information such as IP addresses.

Cost: Free

Compatibility: Android, APK, F-Droid, iOS, Linux, and Windows

Key features of the platform include:

  1. Group Chats
  2. Voice Messages
  3. Secure File Sharing
Pros Cons
No need for a phone number or email address during sign-up Lack of group voice and video call functionality
Strict non-collection of geolocation or metadata Users must independently verify the identity of their conversation partners on another platform
Collaboration features cater to work-related use cases Resource-intensive, particularly on low-specification devices
Responsive User Interface (UI)

3. Telegram

A screenshot displaying the desktop view of the secure messaging platform, Telegram. Telegram stands as an instant messaging app offering seamless synchronization of conversation data across various devices. Users can engage in group chats and create digital communities. It’s crucial to note that while Telegram provides end-to-end encryption (E2EE) for “secret chats,” sensitive content should be avoided in public channels. Notably, the platform ensures government inability to review messages, with access limited to a user’s IP address and phone number, obtainable only with a legal warrant.

Price: Free

Availability: Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, and Windows

Telegram boasts a range of features, including:

  1. Live Streaming
  2. File Sharing
  3. Video Calls
  4. Voice Chats
  5. Secret Chats
  6. Rich Media

These features contribute to Telegram’s versatility as a messaging platform.

Pros Cons
Facilitates the creation of group chats accommodating up to 200,000 people Vulnerable to the passage of spam messages to users
Empowers users to establish channels for streaming to audiences of any size Presence of several unmonitored channels
Offers a generous storage capacity

4. Wire

A screenshot showcasing the interface of the Wire secure messaging platform on both mobile and desktop. Wire, a secure messaging app trusted by businesses and governments worldwide, utilizes its encryption protocol, Proteus, based on Signal’s framework. Beyond encrypting messages, Wire extends its security to cover videos, audio communications, and file transfers.

Price: Contact sales for details

Availability: Android, iOS, Mac, and PC

Key features of Wire include:

  1. End-to-End Encryption
  2. Self-Deleting Messages
  3. Authentication Settings
  4. Team Management
  5. Service Level Agreements (SLAs)

These features make Wire a comprehensive and secure communication solution.

Pros Cons
Data sovereignty measures in place Limited integrations with other platforms
Clean and intuitive user experience (UX) Sluggish data syncing at times
Incorporates advanced security features Occasional messaging glitches

5. AWS Wickr

A screenshot showcasing the interface of the AWS Wickr secure messaging platform. AWS Wickr, formerly Wickr Me, stands as a private messaging app catering to businesses, government agencies, the military, and individuals prioritizing online privacy. Acquired by Amazon Web Services in 2021, this platform not only facilitates collaboration and automated workflows but also safeguards user messages from government access. However, it’s important to note that certain legal requirements may necessitate the disclosure of specific account details.

Price: Contact sales for details

Availability: Android, iOS, Linux, Mac, web, and Windows

Key features of AWS Wickr include:

  • End-to-End Encryption
  • Group Messaging
  • Teleconferencing
  • File Sharing
  • Message Expiration Timers
  • User Management
  • Advanced Security Measures
Pros Cons
Zero trust platform design Less user-friendly compared to other options
Seamless enterprise integrations Extended load times
Efficient management of high volumes of incoming messages Limited options for personalization

6. Threema

A screenshot depicting a conversation between users on the Threema secure messaging platform. Threema provides secure messaging solutions for both individual users and businesses. Individual users can opt for a one-time fee, ensuring lifetime access to encrypted messaging, while businesses can choose from three pricing tiers starting at $14.99 per user annually. Threema maintains a strict policy of not disclosing message content under any circumstances, although user-provided email addresses or phone numbers may be disclosed in specific situations.

Price: Starting at $4.99

Availability: Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, and Windows

Key features and capabilities of Threema include:

  • Anonymous Chat
  • Voice and Video Calls
  • Automation and Integration
  • Web Client and Desktop App
  • Polls
  • Group Chats
Pros Cons
Open source with regular security audits Limited integrations
GDPR-compliant
Ad-free with no data collection

7. SimpleX Chat

A screenshot displaying a secure chat thread between SimpleX Chat users. SimpleX is an encrypted messaging app that revolutionizes user privacy. Instead of utilizing user IDs or randomly generated numbers, the platform assigns short-term, anonymous identifiers, eliminating long-term identification and preventing metadata links. This innovative approach enhances user privacy without compromising connectivity.

Price: Free

Availability: iOS and Android

Key features of SimpleX Chat include:

  • End-to-End Encrypted (E2EE) Messages
  • Decentralized Secret Groups
  • Disappearing Messages
  • Incognito Mode
  • Message Reactions
  • Voice Messages
  • GIFs and Stickers
Pros Cons
Excels in providing anonymity Push notifications may arrive slowly
Intuitive and user-friendly platform Occasional app glitches
Good audio call performance

8. Element.io

A screenshot showcasing the Element.io desktop and mobile app. Element.io, formerly known as Riot, is a messaging app specifically designed for secure business collaboration, with downloadable mobile and desktop applications. The platform employs industry-standard end-to-end encryption, and uniquely, it integrates seamlessly with popular messaging systems like Signal and Slack.

Price: Starts at $5 per user/month

Availability: Android, iOS, Linux, macOS, web, and Windows

Key features of Element.io include:

  • End-to-End Encryption
  • Decentralized Data
  • Group Chat Rooms
  • Device Verification
  • Voice and Video Calls
  • Compliance Audits and Reports
  • Polls
  • Location Sharing
Pros Cons
User-friendly interface Challenges with large file handling
Open-source software Occasional bugs triggered by poor internet connections
Full-featured dashboard

Also Read How to fix whatsapp profile picture blurry

9. Dust

A screenshot illustrating the Dust secure messaging platform. Dust integrates security, authentication, and encryption technologies to ensure the protection of user messages. Prioritizing user privacy, the platform conceals usernames, empowers users to delete messages sent to others, and provides alerts for data breaches and screenshots.

Price: Free

Availability: iOS and Android

Key features of Dust include:

  • Encrypted Messenger
  • Watchdog
  • Stealth Search
  • Non-Data Collection
  • Data Breach and Screenshot Alerts
Pros Cons
Secure alternative to Snapchat Security measures are not disclosed
Useful for social networking Does not prevent screenshots
Alerts users to screenshots Requires a phone number or email for registration

10. LINE

A screenshot displaying secure chats between LINE users. LINE, originally developed for alternative messaging during disasters, goes beyond basic end-to-end encryption (E2EE) communication. It enriches the user experience with features resembling TikTok-style videos, a digital wallet akin to Apple Pay, and forums facilitating connections based on shared interests.

Price: Free

Availability: iOS, macOS, iPadOs, watchOs, and Android

Distinctive features of LINE include:

  • Stickers and Emojis
  • Digital Wallet
  • Chat Forum
  • Voice, Text, and Video Calls
  • Video Sharing
Pros Cons
Unique features within the secure messaging space Less commonly utilized outside of Asia
Distinctive usage, particularly prevalent in Asia Mandatory opt-in for encryption by users
Users have the option to opt into encryption Content deletion upon account transfers

11. Silence

A screenshot showcasing the Silence secure messaging app. Silence, formerly known as SMSSecure, emerges as a valuable secure messaging option. However, its encryption feature requires both the sender and recipient to have the app installed on their devices. Without this, it functions as a standard SMS/MMS messaging platform. Unfortunately, Silence is exclusively available for Android, as Apple’s restrictions prevent its use on iOS.

Price: Free

Availability: Android

Key features of Silence include:

  • End-to-End Encryption
  • Text and Multimedia Messaging
  • Internet-Free Communication
Pros Cons
Open-source platform Limited to Android users
Reliable encryption measures Updates may be slow as the platform relies on contributions
Less convenient compared to online options

12. iMessage

iMessage, Apple’s response to the expanding reach of WhatsApp, has evolved to match and even surpass its features. When communicating from iPhone to iPhone, iMessage eliminates character limits and allows users to share a variety of media, including pictures and videos. The platform also offers extensive app integrations, enabling users to do much more within the messaging interface.

A standout feature is the integration of Apple Pay in select countries, facilitating the seamless sending of money through text messages. Additionally, iMessage introduces Animojis, allowing users to convey messages using 3D animal puppets, such as a fox, monkey, or unicorn, with mouth movements synchronized to their own.

It’s worth noting that iMessage is exclusively designed for Apple devices, limiting its compatibility to iPhones, iPads, and Macs. This exclusivity means that communication with Android users requires resorting to traditional 140-character SMS. iMessage comes pre-installed on iPhones, providing users with a feature-rich messaging experience right out of the box.

13. Discord

Consider trying out Discord if you’re in search of a messaging platform similar to WhatsApp but with added features. Discord goes beyond simple chatting, offering a multitude of features for users.

Within Discord, users can explore various interesting servers, providing a diverse experience. Alongside standard features like file sharing and audio/video conversations, one of the standout functionalities is the ability to screen-share with friends.

Discord isn’t just a messaging app; it integrates seamlessly with platforms such as Battle.net, Reddit, Xbox Live, Twitch, YouTube, Spotify, Steam, and more. Users can create their own server for a personalized experience or form groups with up to ten members.

Android Play Store Rating: 3.4/5
iOS App Store Rating: 4.7/5

With its unique blend of features and integrations, Discord offers a dynamic alternative to messaging platforms like WhatsApp.

14. Facebook Messenger

What better way to kick off our list of WhatsApp alternatives than with another efficient messaging interface from the tech giant Facebook? While both Facebook Messenger and WhatsApp are under the same corporate umbrella, they operate with distinct features.

Android Play Store Rating: 4.2/5
iOS App Store Rating: 4.1/5

Originally introduced as Facebook Chat in 2008, Facebook expanded its messaging services significantly over the next two years. This led to the release of a standalone messaging app called Messenger, completely separating the messaging interface from the native Facebook app. Today, Messenger, developed by Meta Platforms, stands as one of the most widely used messaging apps after WhatsApp.

Key Features:

  • Phone Number Privacy: If sharing your phone number is a concern, Messenger provides an excellent alternative. Users can simply add another Facebook user and initiate chats.
  • Video and Voice Calls: Messenger supports seamless video and voice calls without the need to share phone numbers.

With its robust features and wide user base, Facebook Messenger emerges as a reliable alternative to WhatsApp in 2024.

15. Google Messages

As a response to the limitations of iMessage on Apple devices, Google introduced its exclusive Android messaging service named simply “Messages.”

Accessible on the Play Store, this app serves as a replacement for your standard SMS app, offering a significant advantage by seamlessly integrating with all of Google’s apps and services. The deep integration allows users to effortlessly share images directly from Google Photos and utilize Google Assistant to make restaurant reservations or engage in various activities, all within the app.

Conclusion of The Best WhatsApp Alternatives

The internet offers a multitude of effective WhatsApp alternatives, each catering to specific scenarios based on user needs. These alternatives vary in their offerings, providing options for extremely secure information exchange or additional features.

Some alternatives excel in offering screen presentation capabilities, while others focus on facilitating offline information exchange. The choice ultimately depends on the user’s specific usage scenario. We can assure you that selecting any of the WhatsApp alternatives mentioned in this article will meet your expectations, offering a suitable solution for your messaging needs.

FAQ’S for Alternatives for WhatsApp

1. Why consider WhatsApp alternatives?

Ans. WhatsApp alternatives are considered for various reasons, including enhanced privacy features, additional functionalities, and specific use-case scenarios. Users may opt for alternatives based on their preferences and requirements.

2. What factors should I consider when choosing a messaging app?

Ans. Factors to consider include end-to-end encryption, user authentication, open-source code, rich media capabilities, self-destructing messages, and compliance with regulations such as HIPAA for healthcare organizations.

3. What are the cybersecurity tips for keeping messages secure?

Ans. Secure messaging services can benefit from practices like avoiding public Wi-Fi, verifying identities before communication, using two-factor authentication, avoiding suspicious links, enabling self-destructing messages, and reporting suspicious activity promptly.

4. How can I protect my online communications?

Ans. To enhance the security of online communications, consider using comprehensive security software such as Norton 360 Deluxe, which provides layers of protection, including a VPN for encrypting information sent and received online.

5. What are the standout features of secure messaging apps?

Ans. Secure messaging apps typically include features like end-to-end encryption, user authentication, open-source code, rich media capabilities, self-destructing messages, HIPAA compliance, and more, all contributing to enhanced user privacy.

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