In this WhatsApp vs WeChat comparison guide, we take a look at the two very popular instant messaging services that combined have over three billion users which is quite astonishing considering that there are many other instant messaging apps available out there. When looking into WhatsApp vs WeChat in terms of their active user statistics, WhatsApp with over two billion monthly active users most certainly wins even though WeChat is quite popular as well with over 1.24 billion active users as estimated in 2021.
More active users has Facebook (2.7 billion) while Facebook Messenger has over 2 billion users like WhatsApp. WeChat comes next followed by Instagram. Looking into these statistics shows that WhatsApp and WeChat are extremely popular and widely used across the globe. If you are interested in exploring how WhatsApp compares to other messaging apps such as Viber, Telegram, and Signal, make sure you check out our other articles.
WhatsApp Vs WeChat – How Many People Use These Apps?
WhatsApp has been around since 2009. This cross-platform, freeware, voice-over-IP messaging service originally catered to iOS users while today the WhatsApp messaging app can be downloaded to Android devices as well. Just like other messaging apps out there, WhatsApp is used for sending voice and text messages, making video and voice calls, sharing documents, files, and various other content. Besides the WhatsApp mobile app, the service’s client application is also accessible to desktop users.
Developed by Tencent Holdings Limited, WeChat emerged in January of 2011 so over ten years ago. The app supports seventeen languages and it works on Android and iOS portable devices. Back in 2018, WeChat became the largest standalone messaging app in the world with a staggering number of over 1 billion users. Just like WhatsApp, WeChat allows users to send text and voice messages, share videos, locations, and images, as well as benefit from video conferencing options.
WhatsApp was acquired by Facebook back in 2014 and this most certainly boosted the app’s popularity in the world. With over 2 billion active users, WhatsApp is the most used instant messaging app and it is estimated that over 100 billion messages are sent using the app every day. Over 390 million Indians use WhatsApp. WhatsApp is also extremely popular in Brazil, the United States, Indonesia, Russia, Mexico, Germany, Italy, Spain, and the United Kingdom.
The number of active WeChat users has been increasing steadily in the past several years. As estimated at the beginning of 2012, this instant messaging app had over 1.2 billion active users. WeChat is extremely popular in China, Bhutan, Japan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Thailand, Singapore, Korea, and the United State. When it comes to WhatsApp vs WeChat and their number of active users, WhatsApp once again wins. Over thirty-six percent of all WhatsApp users are between the ages of eighteen and forty-four.
Almost forty percent of all WeChat users are between the ages of twenty-five and thirty-five. In China, twenty percent of all WeChat users are between the ages of twenty-five and thirty while another fourteen percent of users are between the ages of thirty-one and thirty-five. At the same time, the largest age demographic for WeChat is composed of younger people below the age of twenty-four.
While the statistics mentioned in the previous sections are quite impressive and they most certainly illustrate just how popular WhatsApp and WeChat are, we need to take a look at their features to decide which app wins the ultimate WhatsApp vs WeChat battle.
WhatsApp Vs WeChat – What About Their Features?
As mentioned in the previous section, both WhatsApp and WeChat provide video, text, and voice messaging options for free. The two instant messaging apps are quite similar. Further in this WhatsApp vs WeChat comparison guide, we examine their similarities and differences. WeChat has more features available with the app including a mobile wallet, social media, e-commerce, and of course, instant messaging options.
The standard WhatsApp app is more focused on real-time communication and fire sharing. Both WeChat and WhatsApp are compatible with a wide range of devices including Blackberry, Windows, iOS, Android, and macOS. In other words, both apps can be downloaded on mobile and desktop devices at no cost. To use WhatsApp, registered customers need to provide their phone numbers to get started while WeChat can be used even without a SIM card if you connect your WeChat account with your Facebook account.
WhatsApp supports group chatting with up to two hundred and fifty-six individuals in one group while group chats in WeChat can include up to five hundred users. When it comes to WhatsApp vs WeChat and their security features, the two apps are quite similar once again. All messages you send using WhatsApp are private and secured as all messages send are end-to-end encrypted. WeChat employs AES encryption technology but messages you send using the service are not end-to-end encrypted.
Instead of using end-to-end encryption like the vast majority of other secret messaging apps out there, WeChat uses transport encryption which means send messages are encrypted between WeChat servers and the user. At the same time, WeChat offers a bunch of extra features that WhatsApp does not have such as built-in WeChat Pay e-wallet, Shake and Find Near Friends, Service and Subscription accounts, and Social Feed features.
WhatsApp vs WeChat – Comparison Conclusion
WhatsApp major features:
- Messages end-to-end encrypted
- Message seen notifications
- Available on mobile and desktop devices
- File sharing options
- Disappearing text messages
WeChat major features:
- Can be used without a SIM card
- Sign in with Facebook options
- Built-in browser
- WeChat Pay e-wallet
- Find Near Friends option
While WhatsApp is the most popular service of this kind, this WhatsApp vs WeChat battle cannot have a clear winner as both WhatsApp and WeChat have their unique features that make them great. If you are looking for an instant messaging app with a whole range of innovative, handy features, WeChat is perfect for you. If you are looking for a more secure messaging app that still has a decent range of features, then choose WhatsApp.