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Is Signal the New WhatsApp? What is Signal and Why It Is Trending After WhatsApp Policy Fiasco

Is Signal the New WhatsApp? What is Signal and Why It Is Trending After WhatsApp Policy Fiasco

The surge in new registrations on Signal even delayed things, as the company sent out a tweet to tell users that verifying them may get delayed because a lot of people are trying to join Signal.

An instant messaging app Signal has been the talk of the town since past couple of days. The app, which is a direct rival to Facebook-owned WhatsApp messenger, is seeing a massive surge in registrations as users are opting for Signal as an alternative to WhatsApp. This is happening as users are not happy with WhatsApp new policy which states that it will share some user data with Facebook's other apps and services. The surge in new registrations on Signal even delayed things, as the company sent out a tweet to tell users that verifying them may get delayed because a lot of people are trying to join Signal. Apart from WhatsApp's policy, Signal's surge can also be attributed to Elon Musk, who also asked his followers to "join Signal" on Wednesday.

Signal is an instant messaging app developed by non-profit organisation called Signal Foundation. The app was launched in 2014 as a messenger focused on privacy. Signal's tagline is also "say hello to privacy." Signal also comes with end-to-end encryption like WhatsApp and is available for all devices including Android, iPhone, iPad, Windows, Mac, and Linux. Signal Foundation, the company that has made Signal Private Messenger was set up by former WhatsApp co-founder Brien Acton who had parted ways with WhatsApp in 2017. While Signal does provide pretty much all similar features to WhatsApp, it does not allow back up of chats on Google Drive or iCloud. Further, it does not allow groups to add people automatically unless the individuals give their assent.

The spike in the interest around the private messaging app comes as WhatsApp confirmed its new Privacy Policy and Terms of Service. While a lot of what is in the new terms has already been known, WhatsApp is now spelling it out clearly that user data is and will continue to be shared with Facebook and other Facebook products as well as services. WhatsApp also says that it tracks user location data at all times, and even if you are smart enough to turn off location access for WhatsApp on your Android phone or Apple iPhone, the app still collects and logs IP addresses and phone number codes to estimate your general location—WhatsApp says this is for diagnostics and troubleshooting.


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