It seems that Whatsapp have no idea Whatsup!
Since being taken over by Facebook we haven’t seen much change in our user experience on Whatsapp but today marked a big old step backwards for the instant messaging giants. Drum roll please… We can all finally use Whatsapp on desktop!!! Did you feel nothing when you read that? Yeah, I thought as much.
Even if we brush aside the fact you have to use a Google Chrome browser in order for it to work and it doesn’t work with iOS yet… Wait I can’t do it. You launched it without it working with iOS? Are you guys totally mad?!
Why oh why do such a big and ‘forward thinking’ company believe the way forward is going back? We’re living in a mobile world where we all move freely whilst communicating with each other in a number of ways. Phones are getting bigger and desktops are getting smaller. People do business on trains, planes and in taxis. They talk to each other while they are climbing mountains!
Anyway, even if I continue to ignore everything that is wrong with it so far my MSN alarm bells are going off. We all used to instant message on our high speed dial up connections after work or school. Sometimes we would even add song lyrics to our name (cringe) or ‘appear offline’ and sneak up on people. But then the MSN ship well and truly sunk and with it so did online messaging. In essence what I am trying to say is that Whatsapp are so 1999 right now and we’re all so 2015.
The only way I can make sense of their decision is by looking back at my blog post about mobile being the new shop window that I wrote in mid December. Here I questioned why Facebook would force us to all download their messaging app. My conclusion? They did it because they were behind when it came to mobile. It seems that today they have just demonstrated that even further. As Facebook and Whatsapp flap their arms trying to keep desktop and mobile on the same playing field, we’re all off using the Instagrams of the world.
My advice to Whatsapp is do what you do best. Making Whatsapp available on desktop won’t bring back MSN (R.I.P) and it certainly won’t make Facebook more relevant to a younger generation. Stick to mobile. You were already winning anyway.