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WhatsApp makes first move to charge business users

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WhatsApp makes first move to charge business users

WhatsApp said it will soon begin to charge business users for sending marketing and customer service messages.

This would be its first move at charging users as the company faces slowing usage and revenue growth, the social network company said on Wednesday.
According to the messaging platform, messages from this category of users will be charged at a fixed rate for confirmed delivery, ranging from 0.5 cents to 9 cents per message and depending on the country.

In the face of increased cost of operation occasioned by the need to improve privacy safeguards and address concerns about social media addiction, Facebook has been looking for ways to monetize its WhatsApp service.

WhatsApp, which has around 1.5 billion users, said large businesses will be charged for sending non-promotional content, such as shipping confirmations, appointment reminders or event tickets.

Read also: Jigawa to begin exportation of goats to Kuwait, others

In January, the messaging platform had announced it would start allowing small business accounts to communicate through the WhatsApp Business application, which has over three million active users.

Chief Operating Officer of the company, Matt Idema, said at the time that WhatsApp intends to charge businesses in the future.

Facebook also said on Wednesday that users on its namesake app and Instagram can now see the amount of time they spend on the app each day and receive notifications when they exceed a self-prescribed threshold.

Users will also be able to mute notifications from the apps for up to eight hours.

 

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