App Reviewed on: iPhone 4S
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Despite Whatsapp having showed its dominance over all other messaging apps on the App Store, more and more keep popping up to take a swing at the current champ. In my opinion, it now looks a tad dated and lacks a lot of the features possessed by its rivals. The only problem is, everyone and their mothers are on Whatsapp. It has a head start on the competition because of its permanent position at the top of the paid charts and therefore a sheer number of users.
When I first opened the new messaging app MessageMe, I wasn't surprised to see that only 3 of my friends had signed up, as opposed to the 36 possible contacts I had on Whatsapp. Despite this, I opened a new conversation and began. MessageMe has a fair few more features than Whatsapp and doesn't suffer at all because of it. These features include read receipts, doodling and sharing music. It all makes for a well-rounded and efficient messaging experience. The only thing it lacks is the ability to customise the colour schemes or wallpapers within the chats, meaning the interface is a bit too plain. Customisation in this area would be another welcome addition that would only serve to bring in more new users.
After signing up to the service, users get a unique PIN number that can be used as the sole means of identification when adding or searching for other users. This means that there is no need to divulge personal contact information at all, if for example users would rather not give out their phone numbers. However, the user can add multiple phone numbers as well as their Facebook and Twitter accounts if they need to branch out to find or influence other people to join up, which they will probably need to do.
In conclusion, MessageMe is a very capable and feature-packed messaging service, which deserves to do well. However, when it comes to social networking, it isn't as easy as finding an app that looks great and performs better than its rivals. It becomes about convincing friends to join up, to create that network. If they don't, then it's off back to Whatsapp we go, unfortunately.