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‘WhatsApp From Facebook’ Arrives for New Users in Year 2020

The move could let the social networking giant tout higher user engagement to advertisers, further ramping up its advertising division

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WhatsApp on a smartphone device. Pixabay

Taking another step towards monetising and making all its apps — WhatsApp, Messenger and Instagram — into one unified experience for billions of users, the social networking giant has added ‘WhatsApp from Facebook’ for new users on its instant messaging platform in the New Year.

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed his plans last year to integrate its chat services — WhatsApp, Messenger and photo-sharing app Instagram — to let their users message each other across platforms.

Calling it a long-term project, Zuckerberg said the cross-app functionality will happen in 2020 or beyond.

The new feature was spotted by WABetaInfo, a fan website that tracks WhatsApp updates, on Thursday.

“WhatsApp from Facebook is added to the WhatsApp Status for newly registered users!’ posted the website.

A follower replied: “This is a feature that they know how to implement faster!”

WhatsApp in September quietly rolled out a feature for Android users to let them share their status stories directly on Facebook Story and other apps.

facebook, WhatsApp, stories, feature
Silhouettes of mobile users are seen next to logos of social media apps Signal, Whatsapp and Telegram projected on a screen in this picture illustration. VOA

Just like Instagram, WhatsApp’s status stories lets users post images, text and videos on your profile that disappear after 24 hours.

Facebook’s video calling device Portal also works with just a WhatsApp account, allowing users to make video calls to friends and family and access features like ‘Story Time’ even if they don’t have a Facebook account.

According to Zuckerberg, more than the commercial benefits of the chat integration between the apps, he was concerned about data encryption.

Also Read: Twitter to Give Users Control Who Can Reply to Tweets

“The first reason that I’m excited about this is moving more to end-to-end encryption by default in more of our products. People really like this in WhatsApp. I think it’s the direction that we should be going in with more things in the future,” he told analysts during a conference call.

“There are also a number of cases that we see where people tell us that they want to be able to message across the different services,” Zuckerberg noted.

The move could let the social networking giant tout higher user engagement to advertisers, further ramping up its advertising division. (IANS)

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Facebook Working to Re-elect Donald Trump, Says Billionaire Philanthropist Geroge Soros

"As tempting as it is to use the tools available to us to change the outcome, I am confident we must never do that or we will become that which we fear."

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Fake, News, WhatsApp, Facebook, India
The Facebook mobile app on an Android smartphone. Wikimedia Commons

The billionaire philanthropist George Soros has slammed Facebook, accusing the social networking giant of helping to re-elect Donald Trump in the 2020 US election.

“Facebook will work to re-elect Trump and Trump will protect Facebook,” the 89-year-old said during a speech at a dinner hosted by his non-profit Open Society Foundation at Davos on Thursday, reports Politico.

“It makes me very concerned about the outcome of 2020,” Soros added.

Reacting to his outburst, a Facebook spokesperson said: “This is just plain wrong”.

At the dinner speech, Soros called Trump “the ultimate narcissist”, and Xi Jinping a “dictator”, while praising Swedish activist Greta Thunberg.

Soros also announced he will launch “the most important project of my life” — a $1 billion investment in “critical thinking” via a new network of colleges.

Judge, Trump, Moral
FILE – President Donald Trump speaks to members of the media on the South Lawn of the White House, in Washington, Nov. 4, 2019. VOA

Earlier this month, Facebook Vice President Andrew ‘Boz’ Bosworth claimed that it was the social networking giant that got Donald Trump elected as the US President in 2016 because “he ran the single best digital ad campaign I’ve ever seen from any advertiser”.

In a memo obtained by The New York Times, the key Facebook executive in the same vein suggested that the platform with over 2.45 billion monthly active users should not use its enormous reach to block Trump”s reelection in 2020.

“He (Trump) didn’t get elected because of Russia or misinformation or Cambridge Analytica. He got elected because he ran the single best digital ad campaign I’ve ever seen from any advertiser. Period”, said Bosworth who runs Facebook”s hardware group.

“Trump just did unbelievable work,” Bosworth wrote.

Also Read: Amazon Asks Judge to Block Microsoft from Pentagon Project

“As tempting as it is to use the tools available to us to change the outcome, I am confident we must never do that or we will become that which we fear.”

Facebook also announced it will show fewer political ads to people on its platform and Instagram, starting with the US which faces Presidential elections this year, but won’t ban or limit those as Twitter has already done and Google to some extent. (IANS)