In this detailed WhatsApp vs iMessage guide, we take a look at these two extremely popular and widely used instant messaging services, we take a look at their security and their features to see how they compare with each other. In 2021, there are over two billion individuals in the world who use WhatsApp to communicate with friends and family members. iMessage is a popular instant messaging service owned and operated by Apple Inc.
It was launched in 2011 and unlike WhatsApp that works on both iOS and Android devices, iMessage is only available on Apple-developed platforms including iOS smartphones, macOS, watchOS, and iPadOS devices. When looking into WhatsApp vs iMessage popularity, WhatsApp most certainly wins since it has over two billion users and iMessage is used by significantly fewer people and this does not come as a surprise as iMessage only works on Apple devices.
WhatsApp was launched in 2009 so four years before iMessage being introduced. The instant messaging service was created by Jan Koum and Brian Acton who at the time worked for WhatsApp LLC. In 2024, WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook Inc. This super exciting WhatsApp vs iMessage battle continues, so let’s check what the two iconic instant messaging services offer to their users.
WhatsApp Vs iMessage – Their Usage and Availability
Not so long ago, we used to communicate via SMS, and even though SMS is still very much in use, Short Messaging Services as SMS stands for, is most certainly overshadowed by instant messaging services such as WhatsApp, iMessage, Telegram, Signal, WeChat, Line, Viber, and other. Back in 2009, Brian Acton and Jan Koum who used to work for Yahoo came up with a brilliant idea, an instant messaging app thanks to which people would be able to send messages online without spending a dime.
At the time, the popularity of smartphones was on the rise and both App Store and Google Play Store had started to attract more visitors. Their idea became the most used instant messaging service today, WhatsApp. Only two years later, Apple released its instant messaging service iMessage. So, what are the WhatsApp vs iMessage key differences and similarities?
Back in 2009 when WhatsApp was launched, it was only available for download on the App Store, and its first version was only available to iPhone users. In 2010, the company behind WhatsApp started offering support for Android OS, Symbian OS, and Blackberry devices. Fast forward to 2021, WhatsApp can be downloaded on a whole range of devices including Android and iOS-powered smartphones and tablets and Windows and macOS devices.
As previously mentioned, Apple’s iMessage instant messaging service was exclusively designed for iOS smartphones. At the time of its initial release, the service was only available to users of iPhone devices while today it can be downloaded to watchOS, macOS, and iOS devices. When it comes to WhatsApp vs iMessage usage and availability, WhatsApp wins since its cross-platform service is available to everyone regardless of which device use. At the same time, iMessage is only available to Apple users.
WhatsApp Vs iMessage – Their Core Features
When it comes to WhatsApp vs iMessage and their core features, these instant messaging services are quite similar. WhatsApp users can send voice and text messages, make video and voice calls, as well as share files, documents, videos, images, and other content. iMessage users can also send text messages, share videos, and images. Both WhatsApp and iMessage users can share their location and send stickers as well. When it comes to sending and receiving instant messages on WhatsApp, the service relies on network connectivity.
Speaking of network connectivity, there are two options Wi-Fi and mobile data. In other words, to send and receive messages using this service, users must be connected to the internet either via Wi-Fi or 4G. The main issue with using mobile data and WhatsApp is that it can get quite expensive at times especially when sending documents, images, or videos. Moreover, if users are connected to a lacking Wi-Fi, WhatsApp may not be working properly and they have to wait for a more appropriate Wi-Fi connection.
When it comes to Apple’s iMessage, the instant messaging app also relies on both Wi-Fi and mobile data connectivity. However, if these options are not available, iMessage can be used as any other standard SMS service and this is a huge plus.
Back in 2015, WhatsApp allowed PC users to access its instant messaging service with at the time newly launched WhatsApp web client. This web client can be accessed via all web browsers such as Edge, Opera, Chrome, and Mozilla Firefox. For the WhatsApp web client to work, users need to connect their portable devices with WhatsApp apps installed through the internet. On the other hand, iMessage does not have a web client so PC users cannot use the service on their Windows PCs and laptops.
What About Their Security?
There are no huge differences between WhatsApp vs iMessage security features. Both WhatsApp and iMessage rely on the most advanced SSL data encryption protocols and algorithms to make sure that all messages sent using their services are encrypted at all times. More specifically, WhatsApp employs end-to-end encryption technologies so you can rest assured that your messages sent using the service can only be accessed by you and the intended recipient.
iMessage also relies on end-to-end encryption technologies to protect its user’s FaceTimeand iMessage conversations across all Apple devices. Both WhatsApp and iMessage are secure with not only text messages being end-to-end encrypted but also images, videos, and other content their users share using their apps.
Despite their subtle differences, both iMessage and WhatsApp are extremely useful. They allow you to share images, videos, and much more with friends and family safely and they allow you to communicate with everyone you want in real time. Apart from sending and receiving messages from one user, both iMessage and WhatsApp let you communicate in group chats.
Add to this end-to-end encryption, there is no wonder why both instant messaging apps have their loyal fan bases so this WhatsApp vs iMessage battle has no winner as both instant messaging services do the work the right way. If you want to see how WhatsApp compares with other services of this kind such as Signal, Telegram, WeChat, Line, and Viber, make sure you check out these articles as well.