Dictionary, Slow Motion Videos and more on apps this week

Instadict

Browsing through a page, find a word you don’t understand? Instadict to the rescue. Just highlight the word and shake your device. Currently has language packs for English, French and Italian.

Android –

Instadict
Instadict
Developer: Shashank.Mishra
Price: Free

645 Pro

Interested in iPhone photography? Do you like manual controls and dials? 645 Pro is the app for you. Let the video below explain it all:

645 PRO Mk III from Jag.gr on Vimeo.

‎645 PRO Mk III
‎645 PRO Mk III
Developer: Michael Hardaker
Price: 4,49 €

 

Groove Music

Microsoft has really stepped up it’s game when it comes to services. One of the newer additions to their suite of multi-platform apps is Groove Music (formerly XBox Music). What does it do? Well, you could get a Groove Music pass for $9.99 per month and stream from their collection of songs. What makes it much better though, especially for users of OneDrive or Office365, is that Groove Music allows you to stream from your music collectons stored on OneDrive, at no additional cost.

Android – 

Microsoft Groove
Microsoft Groove
Price: Free

iOS –
Microsoft Groove
Microsoft Groove
Price: Free

Windows/Windows Phone – Download from Windows Store

 

Le Kiosk

This section is more focussed on the service than the app itself and it’s availability would be limited to certain countries, but if you’re a magazine subscriber, I’d recommend Le Kiosk. There are different plans – 3 magazines a month for around €3.99, 10 for €9.99 and 25 for €19.99, with a 30 day free trial. It also offers a magazine discovery service and has most of the bigger publications along with a collection of the smaller magazines, the list varies by country. Currently, UK, France and Italy only.

Android – 


iOS – 
Windows/Windows Phone – Download from Windows Store

 

TruSloMo

TruSloMo is a must have app if you shoot slow motion videos on your iPhone and want an easy way to export and edit the videos. It’s much easier than using iMovie on your phone and even has an option to easily publish to Whatsapp or Instagram.

iOS – 

TruSloMo
TruSloMo
Developer: William Wu
Price: Free+

 

Morecast

For detailed, hyperlocal weather forecasts, you have the apps that use Forecast.io. However, the accuracy will depend on the weather stations available. If you’re in Europe, there’s another option – Morecast. With weather data from UBIMET which is a large weather data provider, the app is detailed and even looks good. The one downside though, is the lack of a 5 row wide widget (if you have a phablet).

Android – 

iOS – 

‎MORECAST Wetter App
‎MORECAST Wetter App
Developer: UBIMET
Price: Free+

Photography, image search and more on apps this week

ProShot

ProShot by Rise Up Games started out a while back as a fully featured camera app for Windows Phone back in 2012. It launched on iOS in 2014 and is now available on Android as well (for devices running 5.1 and up). On compatible phones, it gives you access to full manual control, editable presets, and on Android, RAW support (assuming your phone fully supports the camera2 API. Check the link above for the full feature listing for each platform.

Windows Phone:
Download from Windows Store

iOS:

Android:

ProShot
ProShot
Developer: Rise Up Games
Price: $4.99

 

Image Searcher

Looking for that Gif to send to a chat app? Or an image? Why bother searching and then downloading it when you can do it directly from the media share feature in the chat app? Your preferred chat app doesn’t have such a feature? Try Image Searcher. Just remember, don’t set a default while trying to share an image and it’s all good.

Android:

 

Google Drive on Windows Phone

Sure, Google doesn’t really bother supporting Windows Phone, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use certain apps. If you are a Google Drive user, check out the unofficial drive client.. Check out the full review on All About Windows Phone.

Windows Phone:
Download from Windows Store

Polarr

What started out as a browser based photography app has now evolved into a free iOS app (with in app purchases, of course). It’s pretty feature rich and allows you to create and save your own presets as well.

iOS:

 

Football Frenzy – Apps for iPhone, Android and Windows Phone

With the UEFA Champions League and Europa Cup Finals just around the corner and with the FIFA World Cup just a month away, here’s a few apps that are must haves to keep track of the news and updates.

 

Forza Football

Forza FootballForza Football recently underwent a transformation, with a new name (it was formerly called Live Score Addicts), new icon and with a news section added in. It’s the app that I use, and it’s a brilliant, must have app.

You can control the update rate, from an addict friendly 5 seconds to a battery friendly 180 seconds. You can select leagues, teams and tournaments to follow, and it’ll even suggest the league and teams based on your location during initial setup. This includes almost every league and tournament in the world along with international competitions. You can customize what updates you want: Cards, Goals, Game start/half-time/full-time notifications and other events. You have league tables, player stats and much more. But the best part has to be the fact that you can mute notifications for a preset time period or during the nights.

Check them out over at footballaddicts.com

Get the app for iOS and Android (sorry Windows Phone folks):

Download from iTunes

‎Forza Football
‎Forza Football
Developer: FootballAddicts
Price: Free+

Download from Google Play

 

ESPN FCESPN FC

ESPN recently launched an updated app for the World Cup and certain leagues and clubs. It also has video highlights, which unfortunately, is US only.

The Leagues that are supported so far include the top English, German, French, Mexican and American leagues (and a few more), along with the top tournaments. You can get play-by-play updates, match analysis, transfer news bits and more.

Download from iTunes

Download from Google Play

Sorry Windows Phone users. You could try out ESPN Sportscenter:

 

FIFA

When in doubt, get the official app from the governing body itself: the official FIFA app. You get coverage of pretty much all the leagues and cups. I was quite surprised when the app turned out to be actually nice.

Apart from the news, game schedules and scores, the app also has a section outlining FIFA’s various initiatives.

Again, sorry windows phones fans, the app is iOS and Android only. For some weird reason, they don’t have an universal iOS app.

FIFA for iPhone

‎FIFA - Fussball Nachrichten
‎FIFA - Fussball Nachrichten
Developer: FIFA
Price: Free

FIFA for iPad

FIFA für iPad
FIFA für iPad
Developer: FIFA
Price: Free

Download from Windows Phone Store

ScoreMobile FC

ScoreMobile FC, so far at least, has been the only app that I have found that exists on almost every platform. It’s available on iOS, Android, Windows Phone & Blackberry (10 and OS7). It even used to exist on Symbian, until Nokia shut down the Ovi Store (you could probably search for a .sis file, I haven’t linked to one since I am not sure which is the right forum to look at for Symbian nowadays). While the standard features (score updates, game events, match schedules, etc) are present on all platforms, there are limitations on some platforms, primarily when it comes to push notifications.

Get the apps:

Download from iTunes

Download from Google Play

Download from Windows Phone Store

For Pre Blackberry 10 Devices, get the app hereBB10 users, the app has been renamed and is now called theScore. Get it here.

LiveSoccer World Cup Edition

A relatively new app on Android, one that I have not extensively used, is LiveSoccer. Honestly, it’s Football, not Soccer. But the app works pretty well and has the main functionalities that one would expect, with notifications, match details, schedules & news.

Download from Google Play

Are there any apps on your platform of choice that should be here? Let us know in the comments below.

 Image Credit: Wikipedia

Oppo Find 7’s 50MP Camera, Karbon & Dual Boot Phone, Ubuntu Phones and more

Karbon to Lauch a Dual Boot Phone in June

Karbon, an Indian mobile manufacturer, has announced that they’ll be launching a dual-OS phone which runs both Windows Phone and Android. I believe that this is a good first move from a phone manufacturer to give the buyer the choice of platform they would like to run on the phone. I do have some doubts about how much space both the OS would take up on the on-board storage. As is, with just one operating system on the device, a 16 GB device gives downwards of 12GB or less for the user to store their data, now with two Operating Systems, we’ll have to see how much free space the phone will come with. I’m also assuming that since Karbon is setting a launch date of June, these phones should come with the Windows Phone 8.1 right out of the box.

Read more about this at Times of India

Ubuntu Phones coming out this year from Meizu and bq

Canonical has been showing off Ubuntu for Mobile for a while now. While it’s crowdfunding attempt to raise money for the Ubuntu Edge failed, they now have announced that Ubuntu for Mobile finally has official partners. They are teaming up with bq, a Spanish manufacturer and Meizu, a Chinese one, to release phones running Ubuntu will be out this year

Read on at Ubuntu Insights

Oppo teases the Find 7 Phone rumored to have a 50MP camera

Oppo Find 7 teaserOppo is to launch the Find 7 on the 19th of this month at an event in Beijing. While one of their teasers suggests that the Find 7 is going to be greater than the S5, there’s a leak which shows that the Find 7 may come with a 50MP camera.
Cameras with these gut-wrenching megapixel numbers were once Nokia’s staple weapon. Now it looks like Oppo may be bringing in competition in that area. The sample image has a resolution of 8160×6120, with a file size of 9.7MB. EXIF information from the image shows that the camera is an Oppo Find 7. You can read about this leak at GizChina

Nokia Refocus App now available on Windows Phone Store

A few weeks back we told you that Nokia had some camera tricks up their sleeves for Lumia users through their Refocus app. Well if your phone has been updated to the latest Lumia Amber update, you can head out to the Windows phone store and download the Nokia Refocus app on your phone and start taking pictures.

How the app works is by taking around 3-8 photos at different focus points when you click a snap, and then merges them into a magical snap which you can play with the different focus points later on.So make sure you have your subject close to you before taking a snap and keep your phone steady while the snap is being clicked for best results.

Once you’ve clicked your snap, you can share this with your friends by uploading the snaps and sharing the link. The photo is first uploaded to Skydrive and then to a page on refocus.nokia.com where even your friends can try out different focus points in your photo.

Apart from this feature, Nokia has also bundled a Colour Pop feature which allows you to selectively retain colors in certain areas of your photo and convert the rest to black and white for an artistic twist to the photo.

a6ab56c6-4a3a-4667-b994-e044553b18b4

The Nokia Refocus app is available to all Lumia phones which have a PureView camera. Here are the models for quick reference – Lumia 920, 925, 928, 1020 and 1520. So if you own one of these models, head out to the Windows Phones store and take the app for a spin.

Nokia Refocus – Focus Later – Coming Soon to a Lumia Phone Near You

How many times have you had taken snaps where your subject was out of focus? Well even the best of us have done that at some point or the other. Now how about having your phone take a picture which you can review later and then change the focus? Pictures speak louder than words, so try this out. Click on the wall on the left to focus there, or the street to focus on that.

Impressed?

This was taken using the Nokia Refocus app. Nokia Refocus essentially does some *magic* maths and creates a depth map on the scene you are trying to photograph. When you click the photo, the app then goes and takes multiple photos at varying levels of focus and saves a composite image which you can later open up and adjust the focus on. The app works well when you’re trying to capture a near by object along with objects further out. Awesome work from the Nokia team, who excel in mobile camera phone technology.

Can’t wait to get it?

According to the Nokia Connects team, the app should hit the Windows Phone store in the coming weeks. So keep an eye out on the Nokia Collections section of the Store.

The bad new? Not all Lumias get this.

Only the following phones are capable of running this app as of now:

  • Lumia 920
  • Lumia 925
  • Lumia 928
  • Lumia 1020
  • Lumia 1520

Check out more Nokia Refocus Sample Snaps

News Republic – Your News Fix for iOS, Android & Windows Phone

I love getting my News fix throughout the day, when I’ve got a moment to spare. My usual favorites are Flipboard and Zite, but I’m always looking out  new ways to discover news instead of just sticking to my standard reading list.

News Republic’s latest version has just been added to my list after more than three weeks of using it. I seem to be favoring it more than Flipboard on my iPad. News Republic has quite a few topic you can follow and get updates on your opening screen. Since it’s a news reading app, it serves it function well, and I won’t go into much details there. I’ll just highlight two of my favorite features of the app.

List based viewer
List based viewer

One of the features I really Like about the app are the list based news viewer, which allows reading of the news item, and give a list of other news on the left side. So instead of flipping through stuff I don’t want to read, I can go directly and select the ones I want to. Saves a lot of time on a hype day, with a lot of sites publishing the same news items, and I really don’t want to read the same thing again and again.

Take your News offline
Take your News offline

Another feature I really love is the Offline reading capability. Given that my iPad is just the WiFi model, this is a killer feature which downloads news items from my favorite topics and has it ready for my reading pleasure during my commutes to work. To save bandwidth which downloading items offline, I can also choose to not download images.

Personally, I feel that News Republic on the  iPad really Rocks! Of course, not all versions of the app are equal. Your mileage will vary on the Android and Windows Phone version, so try them out and see if you like it.

Video Walkthrough of News Republic

 

Download

iPad & iPhone

Android

News Republic - Breaking and Trending News
News Republic - Breaking and Trending News

Windows Phone

Image Gallery

Improved Facebook for Windows Phone in now in Beta

In the good news department, Microsoft is finally working on a newer and better Facebook for Windows Phone. The current version of Facebook on the Windows Phone store is quite antiquated and doesn’t work very well at all. Windows Phone users have been complaining about the app’s bad usability, which is evident in the app reviews on the Windows Phone Store.

Here’s what the Windows Phone Blog has to say about the beta app, “Today we’re launching a new program designed to help speed up delivery of new features in the official Facebook app for Windows Phone and need sharp-eyed, energetic volunteers to download a beta version of our next release and tell us how to make it better.

The beta app is a major update from the older one, with the “Metro” style UI being discarded for the standard Facebook Timeline UI which is the staple on the major platforms. It also seems more responsive and faster as well. Photos go hi-res, both on the timeline and when you upload. At the same time, I find a few features still missing or not working as expected.

The good part of the beta app is that you can report these anomalies to Microsoft, so they can add or fix features as they progress along with the beta program. To do this, head over to Settings>About and then click on the “send feedback” button to send that in.

Since this is a beta version, there could be issues with the app, so I’d suggest that you install this beta version along the official Facebook app on your phone, and don’t replace it yet. This way you can access Facebook on the official app in case the beta app goes kaput.

Download

Image Gallery

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What bothers me about Google trying to acquire WhatsApp

I don’t think WhatsApp requires any introduction since most of us are already on it and sending messages to friends and family using this app. Over the past few days, the news vine has been flooded with rumors that Google is looking at acquiring WhatsApp. Let’s first see why Google thinks this messaging platform is good for their product line.

What’s in it for Google?

Let’s start with what WhatsApp has to offer. They have a very popular platform with users from across the globe on a variety of platforms. They also have a hugely scalable application and infrastructure in place. In fact, did you know that during the New Year eve, they processed more than 18 billion message in a day! That goes to show how successful their existing platform is.  One reason for their popularity is the variety of smartphones and feature phones the app supports.

They are currently monetizing their platform, which means they are making money, whether it’s enough or not, they’re still able to rope in some cash. They charge a nominal annual subscription of 0.99 per year, and the industry estimates that they have around 200-300 million active users. The actual revenues may be less, given that they do give a year’s worth of free access to first time users. Nevertheless, if Instagram, a company with no revenue stream can be bought for around $1Billion, WhatsApp with their ability to monetize should command more. The question is whether Google actually needs this revenue?

Screenshot_08_04_13_11_48_PM

Google’s competitior, iOS from Apple already features a iMessage, which allows users to send unlimited text messages over WiFi, but this is limited to only iOS users and Google really needs something like WhatsApp preloaded  and integrated with Google’s platform on the Android to catch up with iOS. (Thanks to Cherian for pointing this out in the comment below)

Boosting Google’s sagging Social Network Portfolio

Google is looking at boosting their Social Network portfolio to compete with the likes of Facebook. Their Google Plus network and Hangouts are being used, but not at the scale Facebook operates at. Google still has a long way to go to get adoption on their platform. Even today I still don’t see many of my non-tech friends active on Google Plus, which means that I still have to keep in touch with them on Facebook.

To top it off, Google still doesn’t have a messaging system for the mobile. Of course, there’s Google Talk and Hangouts, but they are not really easy to use on the mobile, especially when one has to setup a predefined group and communicate with that group. There’s also the problem of cross-platform compatibility, chatting or hanging-out with friends who are on Blackberry, iOS, Android, Symbian and Windows Phone just doesn’t work seamlessly.

Even their biggest rival, Facebook was missing this aspect of social interaction on mobile, and they’ve been quickly and fervently working on bridging this gap. They’re now trying to promote downloads of their Facebook Messenger app which tried to integrate text messages along with Facebook Messaging.

So Google needs WhatsApp now!

Trouble Brewing?

Of course a lot can go right with WhatsApp if Google does agree to buy them out, but it’s what *can* go wrong which people should think about. Here’s some probable scenarios:

[divider]

  • Cutting out Platforms – Google could always decide that some platforms are not worth developing on and discontinue support for Symbian variant, Blackberry and who knows Windows Phone? Given the recent history with Google and Windows Phone, Google’s really not bothered about following their  ‘Don’t be evil‘ motto. I just don’t trust Google as much these days.
  • Deciding to Merge WhatsApp into a totally new App – People are used to their WhatApp! Google may just decide that their Messaging platform, Babel,  is better (even if it isn’t) and merge WhatsApp users over their new shiny app.
  • Leave WhatApp to rot in it’s current state with no more updates – This is a possibility if Google realizes that they don’t want to invest time and money in further development of this platform after they buy it. A classic example of this kind of move from Google is Feedburner, the feed distribution service. Google bought Feedburner, made a few minor updates over the years and now it’s rotting with no updates and users are awaiting Google’s decision to axe the service.
  • Close down WhatsApp – There have been a lot of news buzz of the recent decision from Google on discontinuing the Google Reader service. There are chances that WhatsApp can go down this route as well, leaving all users of the app stranded, and hopping to other similar apps.

[divider]

I just don’t want to loose my favorite Messaging Platform if and when they’re bought by Google. What are your thoughts on this? Do let us know by commenting below.

The Giant List of Text Messaging Replacement Apps – OTT Messaging

Depending on where you are and who your mobile service provider is, text messaging is either so cheap that you don’t worry about it or so expensive that you barely use it. Texting is still one of the most popular methods of communication though , which means someone somewhere is always on it. Of course, sending texts across continents and countries is still expensive.

There are ways around that though, if you’re willing to use your data connection of course. The benefits? Lower cost (especially if it’s an international message) and added features like pictures, videos and more. Of course, that requires an Internet service, and a mobile device that has the app available on it. Oh, and you need to have other people that use that app.

So here’s a list of quite a few of the so called OTT (over the top) text messaging replacement services, with the pros and cons of each.It isn’t a review of the app or service though, and it isn’t a complete list by any stretch. Let us know what we missed and we’ll get around to adding them to this list.

Whatsapp

Whatsapp is one of the oldest ones out there, and as such it’s got a wide base that it works on.

Pros – multi platform (available on everything except Bada. Oh, and Symbian UIQ). Yes, it supports S40 too (and they aren’t smartphones). Media transfer (photos, videos, contact info, Location Data). Group Messaging (upto 20 users per group). Simple setup and use (linked to your phone number, no other login needed).

Cons – Photos are down scaled. Videos have to be under 12MB. There is no confirmation of Message Read status (One green tick-mark is for sent, two is for delivered). Group messaging needs more features/controls (Quiet time for the really talkative groups, Better management of users in that group).

[button style=”5″ caption=”Whatsapp” link=”http://www.whatsapp.com/”][/button]

Kik

Kik was the app whose service supposedly pulled blocked by RIM and then got back onto the Blackberry Platform. It’s simple to use, it’s fast, it’s almost like BBM. And now it’s available on most major smartphone platforms.

Pros – Fast. Really Fast. Login with user created account, so the same account can be used simultaneously on multiple devices. Sent, Delivered and Read status (for those who want to track that). Available on iOS, Android, Symbian, Blackberry and Windows Phone. Has plugins (like sketchee) for more functionality.

Cons – User Created account (now that’s another thing you have to remember). Group Messaging controls. The Symbian app is quite limited at the moment, and there is no S40 app.

[button style=”5″ caption=”Kik” link=”http://kik.com/”][/button]

Ebuddy XMS

Ebuddy has been around for a while as a web and mobile based IM client. XMS is their take on the OTT messaging service.

Pros – Multi Platform (Windows Phone, Symbian, iOS, Android, Blackberry & J2ME). Group Messaging. Media Sharing. Facebook Login to setup the account and pull in contacts. Web version available.

Cons – Broadcast option is missing.

[button style=”5″ caption=”Ebuddy XMS” link=”http://www.ebuddy.com/”][/button]

PingMe

 PingMe is another messaging service that seems to focus more on interaction (Media Content) and on meeting new people.

Pros – Neat interface that brings Media content up front and centre. Group Messaging. Registration with just your phone number.

Cons – iOS and Android only (they dropped Blackberry and Windows Phone support a little while ago).

[button style=”5″ caption=”PingMe” link=”http://pingme.net/”][/button]

Hookt

Hookt has been around for a couple of years now, has a few common features present in the other platforms (Group Chat, Stickers, Emojis), but it has two “features” that kind of set it apart. A) It syncs across platforms (send a message on one device, platform, it’ll be there on all the others that have your account). B) Desktop and Mobile Web Support (handy for platforms that aren’t supported)

Pros – Unique ID. Syncs across Platforms (Supports iOS, Android and Blackberry (Not BB10), desktop and mobile web.

Cons – No Windows Phone Support.

[button style=”5″ caption=”Hookt” link=”http://www.hookt.com/”][/button]

ChatON

ChatON is Samsung’s own cross platform messaging service, that has a lot of the features that other services have, including cross platform sync. It also has the ability to create an animated message or picture. It seems to have a little bit more detailed profile management, kind of like a Social Network (no it isn’t one)

Pros – Unique ID. Syncs across Platforms (Supports iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone, Certain Samsung Non-Smartphones, and desktop. Animated Messages.

Cons – No ability to actually manage notification tones (I could not find a way to turn off the tone!). Clunky interface (there are a lot of features, you just have to find them).

[button style=”5″ caption=”ChatON” link=”https://web.samsungchaton.com/”][/button]

Wechat

WeChat is one of the newer entrants. It’s developed by Tencent. The service has grown massively of late, mostly in China and South East Asia.. It has apps on most platforms (No BB10 yet) and a couple of things that it has over the others are Video Chat and what it calls “Drift Bottle” – you literally throw your message out there and wait for someone to pick it up. It’s also one of the fastest growing services, in Asia at least.

Pros – Sign in using phone number of Facebook Connect. Find Friends from FB. Symbian, Android, Blackberry (no BB10 yet), iOS, Windows Phone and Web clients.

Cons – No timestamps, delivery notifications & read reports.

[button style=”5″ caption=”Wechat” link=”http://www.wechat.com/en/”][/button]

Line

Line is a service by Japanese company Naver and it’s got everything but the kitchen sink! It’s available for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry (No BB10 yet), for the Mac, Windows and Windows 8. Apart from the usual messaging, it has other services available (some as in-app purchases), like audio calling, video and audio messages, social gaming, stickers and more. In Japan, it has more active users than facebook!

Pros – Sign in using phone number or email. Android, Blackberry (no BB10 yet), iOS, Windows Phone, Mac, Windows/Windows 8 clients, Sync’chats across clients. Free calling, Audio and Video messages, Stickers, games

Cons – Only one smartphone can be used for a registered user (you can use it on one device and on a Mac/Windows computer).

[button style=”5″ caption=”Line” link=”http://line.naver.jp/en/”][/button]

Kakaotalk

Kakotalk is like a Korean version of Line, and it’s been around for a long time now. Just like Line, in Korea, it has more active users than Facebook. It has clients for iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry (No BB10 Yet) and Bada. It also has other add on services like Kakaopoll, Kakaolink, etc, adding even more modes of interaction. It does not have a desktop client however.

Pros – Sign in using email. Android, Blackberry (no BB10 yet), iOS, Windows Phone, Bada clients. Free calling, Audio and Video messages, Stickers. Pin lock for chats.

Cons – No Desktop Client. Only one mobile number per account.

TU Me

TU Me is an example of a service created by an operator (Telefonica) to catch up with the rest of the OTT service (which operators supposedly hate because of the loss of revenue from text messaging). And on first glance, they’ve done a good job of it. It looks good, has quite a few features and most importantly, you do not have to be a Telefonica customer to use it. It’s iOS and Android only for now, but hopefully it’ll soon get on other platforms. They let you store your chats for a year, after which you have to pay to keep your chat history.

Pros – Sign in using phone number. Audio Calls, Voice and Video messages.

Cons – Android and iOS only. Pay for storage and usage after a limtied period.

Viber

Viber isn’t specifically a messaging service; it started off as a VOIP service which you use to call other Viber users over WiFi or your devices’ data network (kinda like skype). It has had messaging for a while now though, and it doesn’t have much (Group chat for instance), but it does work well with what it’s got. It has clients for iOS, Android, Bada, Windows Phone, Blackberry (no BB10), Symbian and even s40 (like whatsapp).

Pros – Sign in with phone number. Free calling to viber users, messaging & stickers.  iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone, Bada, Symbian and s40 clients.

Cons – No Group Messaging

Moped

Moped is a startup from Berlin thats aims to rethink instant messaging from the ground up. Moped lets you send IM’s over phone as well as your computer. Available on both Android and iOS platforms, Moped allows you to share messages and pictures privately or in a group in a very twitter-y fashion. You’ll need a twitter account to sign up and and can incorporate #tags, and @’s in your messages. Users can receive messages on their mobile devices, desktops or by e-mail. Moped also comes built in with a very instagram type  functionality –  a series of photo filters for for enhancing photo sharing. With dropbox integration and a chrome extension, Moped is trying very hard to cover all bases between mobile and the desktop.

Pros – Access IM’s over mobile, desktop & email, hashtag and @(mention) integration, Chrome extension to share content with Moped contacts.

Cons – only twitter login, no WP client

Jongla

Jongla is different from the others for one main reason: the target audience. It’s targeted at kids. Well, 15-20 year olds. It’s got most of the “fun” features from the other apps; stickers, etc.

Pros – Stickers, Web Login.

Cons – iOS, Android and Web only. Beyond stickers, there’s no other “fun” content sharing options.

Hike

Hike is another example of a service created by an Operator (India’s Bharti Telecom and Japan’s Softbank telecom provider) to try and catch up with the rest of the crowd. A standard IM client with one extra feature, 100 Free SMS/user/month for those times when you have flaky internet connectivity.

Pros – All platform IM client(BB coming soon), 100 free SMS/month and other rewards and incentives for stuff like connecting with you Facebook and twitter accounts

Cons – very low user base

Relay

Relay is all about the GIFs. It lets you share animated content from your own gallery, or you can search the web and send animated content to your buddies. Unfortunately, it’s an iOS only app.

Pros – GIFs! Animated!

Cons – iOS only.

GroupMe

GroupMe has been around for a while now. It started off as a messaging app with the focus being on creating groups and staying in touch with them (set up a group when you’re out at an event or conference, with people you have as contacts and others). It recently got updated with some really neat features, including what they call “Split”. You can track the expenses in each group, or add expenses and have others chip in. It also lets you message people who do not have the app, say, someone without a smartphone. It just sends them a standard text message that they can reply to. GroupMe is meant to be a bit more serious, at least when you compare it to some of the other clients out there. It is owned by Skype after all. Which in turn, is owned by Microsoft.

Pros – Sign in online. Manage and edit groups from any device or from the web. iOS, Android, Windows Phone, Blackberry (no bb10) and Web clients. Texts sent to phones that do not have the client. Split – expense tracking and management per group.

Cons – Focus on Group messaging (can’t really be counted as a con though).

Yoke

Yoke is similar to most other messaging apps, with stickers, scribbles (drawings), etc. It also allows you to edit your message if it hasn’t been read yet, and you can edit it upto 5 minutes after it has been read.

Pros – Sign in with phone number. Edit your chat. Avatars, Scribbles.

Cons – iOS and Android only.

Cubie

Cubie is a new entrant to the social messaging field. It tries to focus on the “fun” aspects of messaging, with a lot of features seen in Line, such as stickers, animations, etc. It does have a few unique features though, enabling you to create your own content, of sorts. You can sketch, edit photos, etc.

Pros – Sign in with phone number. Stickers, Create your own sketches, animations, customize the look of your chat.

Cons – iOS and Android only. Account can be used only on one device. Tied to one phone number, you’ll need to create a new account for a new phone number.

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