Mobile phones have been making it easier for us to contact and connect with one another ever since they were invented. While the first handsets had only call and text functionality, today’s smartphones also keep us connected to what’s going on around the world, thanks to internet access.
Smartphones are evolving at a rapid pace, and so too is the way in which we use our devices.
A poll commissioned by Sky Mobile and reported on by the Independent uncovered that a third of Brits only use phone calls to speak to their parents, then use text and messaging to speak to everyone else.
We collectively send millions of texts, WhatsApp and Snapchat messages every day, and use social media platforms like Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to keep in touch with friends and family.
The researchers found that people were most likely to text their other halves, while friends tend to prefer communicating via WhatsApp.
Over half of the people polled for the study said it was more convenient to communicate over social media than speaking over the phone.
Most of us rely on our smartphones every single day to keep in touch with our friends, family and colleagues. As such, it’s important that you protect your device with insurance that could pay out if you were to damage your phone or if it was stolen.
Gadget Cover provides iPhone insurance that reflects your needs and device, all for a price to suit your budget. Choose us and you’ll enjoy benefits such as unlimited claims, truly instant cover, a low excess fee and a discount on your policy if you opt to pay annually.
The rise of messaging apps
With most smartphone users now preferring to send texts or messages rather than make phone calls, it’s no wonder that messaging apps have skyrocketed in popularity in recent years.
Messaging apps allow us to do things like send free texts, make voice and video calls, share photos, videos and files, and much more.
But which ones are the cream of the crop? Let’s take a look at some of the best ones available to download.
WhatsApp (Free – IOS and Android)
WhatsApp is one of the most popular messaging apps in the world – it had 300 million daily active users at the start of this year.
Simple to set up and totally free, the app lets you message friends and family, create and be part of ‘groups’, make calls, and share things like photos, contacts and location.
As Digital Trends notes, aside from its popularity, another thing that makes WhatsApp such a great choice is the addition of end-to-end encryption, which improves privacy and security.
Facebook Messenger (Free – IOS and Android)
If you’re on Facebook, then it’s certainly worth downloading Facebook Messenger.
The social media platform’s standalone app makes it super simple to stay in touch with friends and family, with the tool automatically populating your contacts straight from Facebook.
You can also add a new contact or let someone add you via a unique scanned code.
The Android version of the app features ‘Chat Heads’, which lets you keep an icon of the person you are talking to floating at the top of your smartphone’s screen.
There are plenty of free stickers and GIFs to send, and the video and voice features are great quality. You can easily send photos, files, your location and even money in some markets.
It’s an all-round great, refined app and no doubt one of the best on the market.
Snapchat (Free – IOS and Android)
Snapchat’s popularity may be waning, but the app doesn’t take itself too seriously and that’s what many people (particularly the younger generations) still love about it.
This app is all about short-lived communication; you send photos and video clips to friends and family that ‘self-destruct’ after a certain amount of time, never to be seen again.
Well, that’s unless you save your Snaps with free cloud storage!
The app is packed with tonnes of hilarious fun effects and filters – arguably its most-loved feature.
You can see where your friends are hanging out with Snap Map (and share your location too), create stories from your fave Snaps, or discover new things you have in common with friends using the Charms feature.
Slack (Free – IOS and Android)
If you’re looking for a messaging app suitable for the workplace, Slack is a great choice.
It can help you and your colleagues get more work done by bringing together team communication and collaboration.
Create and organise conversations by topic or project, message or call anyone in your team, share and edit documents, and customise notifications to help you stay focused on the task at hand.
The great thing about Slack is that it’s integrated with lots of other apps you probably use on a daily basis, including Google Drive, Salesforce, Dropbox, Asana and Twitter. And if that’s not enough, you can also download a desktop version of Slack and sync it with your smartphone app.
If you regularly use your smartphone for work, discover what some of the best apps are by reading our blog, ’The top tools and apps for working from your phone’.
Skype (Free – IOS and Android)
Skype may be best known for its voice and video call functionality, but it’s also got a decent, in-built instant messaging feature.
Whether you’re using it for work or with friends and family (or both), you can get someone’s attention with @mentions, create chat groups, send photos, videos and screen grabs, and liven up chats with GIFs, web images and emoticons.
iPhone insurance from Gadget Cover
Whichever messenger apps you end up downloading onto your device, make sure your mobile phone is protected with insurance from Gadget Cover.
We pride ourselves on providing smartphone users with specialist iPhone insurance, as well as cover for phones from other leading manufacturers like Samsung and Sony.
iPhone insurance can help to recoup the costs if your device is stolen or damaged, and you can pay a little extra for added protection against loss.