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What’s up with WhatsApp?  Well, besides the mega $16 billion purchase by Facebook announced last week, the popular messaging service announced it will add voice calls later this year.

WhatsApp announced during a Mobile World Congress event today that it would be adding voice services to iOS and Android during the second quarter of the year and Nokia and Blackberry devices shortly thereafter, according to reports.  The company also said it now has 465 million monthly active users and 330 million daily users.

If you think that’s a lot of users, it is. WhatApp is growing at an extraordinary pace. In fact, the company’s latest update on monthly active users is 15 million more than four days ago when it was acquired by Facebook. WhatsApp’s inexpensive messaging service has gained in popularity,  particularly in foreign countries, where messaging services can be expensive. The addition of phone calls will likely add to its popularity even further.

WhatsApp’s voice calling features will reportedly be free, although that may only be for a limited time. Currently, the app is free to try for a year (and a buck a year after that) and offers users messaging over Wi-Fi or mobile data networks without dipping into a carrier’s SMS or MMS fees. The voice services will likely follow suit, although the rollout may be different now that it will be owned by a publicly traded company.

Lastly, as WhatsApp’s popularity continues to grow, there’s no doubt you’ll be using it to communicate with family and friends, so be sure to check out this list All Tech Buzz put together of WhatsApp group names to use with your family and friends.


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