WhatsApp and Hangouts are two of the more popular instant messaging platforms available to mobile phone users, so people will naturally want to compare the two of them. Individuals deciding on which one to use are encouraged to shop around. Ask friends to ensure that the app you choose is the same one that they have access to. WhatsApp tends to be more popular, but Hangout attracts people who have preexisting Google Accounts.
Comparing the Two
There are five primary areas in which the two pieces of software are quite different. Those areas are:
1) Price is perhaps the most important deciding factor for many users. WhatsApp is free to download, and in most regions the app is free to use for the first year. Every year after that it charges users a fee of $0.99 per year in order to continue using it. Hangouts is free for life, and doesn’t come with any sort of annual fee. This makes it attractive for penny pinchers.
2) The group chat feature that WhatsApp offers users is far more sophisticated than the one provided by Hangouts. Individuals trying to keep in touch with a large group through Hangouts will find that they do have one nice option, however. Video calling is a major function provided by the software, and Hangouts allows users to chat with up to 10 other video users at a time.
3) Both applications provide availability lines and emoticon support, so this probably won’t be a deciding factor for either. There is some additional location and file transfer support, and these features have a tendency to make the app popular with those who are always on the go. WhatsApp doesn’t lag too far beyond, however.
4) WhatsApp has a huge installed base. The app has literally been downloaded over 500 million times. It’s available for just about every platform, including a number of bargain basement cell phones that don’t really support any other apps. No one will ever have to worry about finding someone to talk to if they opt to use WhatsApp. There are plenty of users. Hangouts was supposed to replace Google Talk, but it never really became quite as popular as that original application.
5) WhatsApp also has the upper hand when it comes to updates. The program isn’t updated too often, which makes it a good choice for those who don’t want to mess around with their installation settings very much. Hangouts releases various periodic updates. The software is provided by Google, and Google has a long history of making changes to the programming code of all of their numerous products.
Which One Wins the Debate
WhatsApp beats out Hangouts in almost every category except for one. Hangouts doesn’t come with a yearly fee, which will attract those who don’t feel that they should have to pay anything for sending and receiving instant messages. WhatsApp certainly has more features, but that additional functionality will come at a price. Ironically, though, fewer people actually use it compared to WhatsApp. That will force the hand of those trying to stay in contact with close friends.