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Whatsapp May Retain Only 18% of Its Current Users Because of This Rookie Mistake Made by Facebook

Ever since Facebook-owned WhatsApp announced updating its privacy policy earlier in January, it has been receiving a lot of flak over the same and users have been flocking from WhatsApp to other alternative apps like Signal and Telegram.

In fact, in its biggest market – India, A recent survey has revealed that only 18% of users may continue using WhatsApp in India while 36% will reduce their usage drastically. Also, 15 per cent of users are likely to stop using the app completely, amid the ongoing privacy row, according to responses from 8,977 citizens in a survey by community social media platform LocalCircles.

WhatsApp had informed its more than 2 billion customers globally that they would have to agree to share certain information such as contact number with Facebook to continue using its service. However, it has now extended its implementation to May 15 from its original date which was in February.

24% of users said that they are switching to other sites for their friends. Overall, over 24,000 responses from Whatsapp users in 244 districts in India were given to the survey. 91 per cent of WhatsApp users have said that if they share payment and transaction information with Facebook and third parties, they would not use their payment features.

WhatsApp has undergone a 35% decrease in the number of downloads from 2 million between January 1 and January 5 to 1.3 million between January 6 and 10 according to Sensor Tower.  By contrast, between the 1st and the 5th of January, Signal’s 24,000 Indian app downloads increased to 2.3 million between the 6th and 10th of January. 

Similarly, between January 6-10, Telegram, which had 1.3 million downloads during that time, was up to 1.5 million. According to LocalCircles, Whatsapp is likely to see its 60 million users leaving, based on the survey results, on the assumption that 400 million smartphones in India currently have WhatsApp enabled.

An approximate 67 per cent of users said that if Whatsapp shares user and transaction information with Facebook and third parties, they plan not to continue conversations with Whatsapp business accounts.

Companies such as Myntra, MakeMyTrip, Bookmyshow, etc., use WhatsApp business accounts to exchange transaction information, invoices, coupons, etc. with customers. In order to communicate with their clients, take orders, and supply products, even small businesses use WhatsApp business accounts.

Recently, WhatsApp explained that the privacy policy improvements “do not in any way impact the privacy of your conversations with friends or relatives.” It said that the updates are linked to “messaging a company on WhatsApp, which is voluntary,” according to a WhatsApp note. 

In an infographic, the company reported that neither WhatsApp nor Facebook can display messages or hear calls and can not see the shared location and that the chat app does not keep records of a user’s calls or messages. Furthermore, it claimed that WhatsApp does not share user contacts with Facebook and that while the user can download his/her info, WhatsApp groups remain private.

 

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Drashti

Drashti is a free-spirited TheDigitalHacker contributor, who loves writing stories and listening to music. She loves learning and exploring new languages and cultures, and makes sure to click a picture of the same for her Memoir.
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