Signal and Telegram Downloads Skyrocket After WhatsApp’s New Service Policy

UTC by José Oramas · 3 min read
Signal and Telegram Downloads Skyrocket After WhatsApp’s New Service Policy
Photo: Depositphotos

Now WhatsApp is actively trying to calm down and keep its users by addressing their concerns.

The new privacy policy from WhatsApp had a massive backlash for the company, as now users are moving away from it and choosing other messaging platforms instead. According to Apptopia, Signal and Telegram downloads have skyrocketed 4,200%.

The move comes after WhatsApp recently shared its new terms of services, stating users would have to agree to share personal information with subsidiaries like Facebook Inc (NASDAQ: FB), including current location, phone numbers, and all kinds of personal data. WhatsApp is forcing their users to agree to these terms by the end of January, or they will lose access to the platform:

“WhatsApp must receive or collect some information to operate, provide, improve, understand, customise, support, and market our Services, including when you install, access, or use our Services. Businesses you interact with using our Services may provide us with information about their interactions with you. We require each of these businesses to act in accordance with applicable law when providing any information to us.”

This information includes real-time location, interactions with other businesses, emails, phone numbers, and everything you interact with will be recorded in Whatsapp’s user base.

Boost for Signal And Telegram

Not surprisingly, the recent terms of use pumped fear to WhatsApp and Facebook users, who are now switching to other platforms seeking more privacy. One great influence for the massive user migration was Tesla CEO Elon Musk, who recently urged his followers to use Signal instead of WhatsApp.

But funny enough, Elon’s tweet had a mixed outcome, as people confused Signal with Signal Advance, a US-based biotech company, and its stock shares skyrocketed more than 500% after the tweet.

The move didn’t stop his followers from moving to different apps. According to Apptopia, Telegram registered more than 5.6 million downloads since last week, while data from Sensor Tower showed that Signal registered around 7.5 million from App Store and Google Play.

Most users are switching platforms concerned about the massive data collection and exposure, and the difference can be noted by comparing generally collected data from the two platforms with Facebook and Whatsapp.

WhatsApp Defending Its Terms

Now WhatsApp is trying to calm down – and keep – its users by addressing their concerns. The platform recently stated in a FAQ that the terms will not affect its user’s privacy somehow:

“We want to be clear that the policy update does not affect the privacy of your messages with friends or family in any way. Instead, this update includes changes related to messaging a business on WhatsApp, which is optional, and provides further transparency about how we collect and use data.”

Accordingly, Signal stated that verification codes were delayed due to the massive demand for the app. The company had to add more services in order to control the recent inflows, as users couldn’t create chat groups or use other functions.

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