While messenger apps got to their peak popularity as Android and iOS apps, the increasing demand for instant messaging makes such software appealing for PC users as well. Having a chat app that would run on all platforms – Windows, Linux, Android, iOS, and others – is especially convenient as you’ll have access to important conversations from any device.
What are the most popular Windows and cross-platform tools for personal messaging? Here are our top picks – all free, cross-platform, and incredibly easy to use.
Why should you use messengers for personal communication?
In case you are new to messaging apps, you can be wondering why these tools have become this popular. Here are several reasons PC and mobile users prefer chat apps for personal and professional communications.
- Security. Most messengers offer chat encryption – essentially no hackers or the government will have access to your chats. Moreover, even the system developers don’t decrypt messages and can’t access them.
- Cost efficiency. Messengers are widely used to make international calls and talk to those friends and loved ones that live in a different country. With these tools, you don’t have to pay a fee for calling abroad.
- Messengers allow you to have your entire contact network at the hand’s reach. You can even use them to communicate with a large group of people.
- Additional features. Messengers have more to offer than traditional SMS or phone conversations – you can send files, stickers, record audio and video messages, have online video chats, and so on.
These are the main reasons to use messengers. In case you want to try a chat app out yourself, here’s the review of top messaging tools in the modern market.
Top 5 Messengers for Personal Communication
WhatsApp messenger is the most widely used messaging app today. Each one of your friends and peers is likely to have a WhatsApp account – thus, after you download WhatsApp for Windows, you’ll be able to connect to your entire personal and professional network.
WhatsApp is free to use – you can call abroad, send text messages, record video and audio, attach files, etc. Users can create groups and shared chats – you’ll be able to communicate with dozens of people all at once.
A few other attractive WhatsApp features include:
- Group video and voice calls;
- Sticker support;
- Built-in payment system;
- Picture-in-picture support – a user can watch Youtube or Facebook videos while browsing WhatsApp;
- Advanced message encryption and security protection.
Viber has a simplistic and thought out design. Most importantly, the app has a wide array of unique features, such as:
- Hiding the ‘Seen’ status of messages as well as a user’s ‘Online’ status;
- Smart notifications;
- A navigation system that enables one-click switching between chats;
- Blocking and unblocking mobile numbers;
- In-app photo editing by ‘doodling’.
Altogether, Viber is a powerful and easy-to-use tool that’s worth trying out.
Telegram has managed to become WhatsApp’s main rival in terms of features and security protection. In fact, protecting data privacy is the platform’s main focus, along with the speed of messaging. Advanced message encryption and fast performance have quickly made Telegram an all-time favorite messenger for many users. Despite having faced DDoS attacks from China, the tool manages to flawlessly protect the security of its users.
You will be able to send an unlimited number of file, photo, video, or audio attachments in one-on-one or group chats. In Telegram, you can communicate with hundreds of people in a shared chat or create a channel to share posts with thousands of users.
Here’s a brief rundown on Telegram’s most attractive features:
- Sticker support;
- Secret chats;
- Detailed group permissions;
- Contact sorting filters;
- Unified group settings to manage all groups in bulk.
Telegram has both app clients and a web-based version – you can always choose a preferred way to access the messenger.
Skype is a renown Microsoft-based messenger, with all the tools for effortless personal and professional communication. The platform’s features include (but are not limited to) calling, video chats, screen sharing, group chats, and so on.
In its new version, Skype released several appealing updates that make the tool a go-to choice both for professional and personal communication. Namely, these include:
- Call recording with live subtitles;
- Smart messaging;
- Private conversations;
- HD audio and video recording.
With Skype, you’ll be able to take the quality of online communication to the next level bringing down the wall of the distance between you and the person on the other side of the screen.
WeChat is a widely-used Chinese messenger. While being an Asian leader, WeChat is only gaining traction in other parts of the world – one of its fewer downsides. All in all, the tool doesn’t require a phone number to register a phone number to register an account. Its features include full-end messaging encryption, scheduled messages, and so on. Here’s a sneak peek on WeChat’s functionality:
- Dual-column design;
- Built-in note creator;
- Selfie stickers;
- Chat alerts.
WeChat offers an original approach to messaging and doesn’t lack unique features. Exploring this messenger will certainly be an experience like no other.
There’s a wide variety of messengers for personal use. Choosing a favorite is not easy when competition in the market is this tight. One way to go about it is by determining the list of high-priority features (wide userbase, security, low data consumption) and finding an app that covers all the points you’ve listed.
Eventually, by downloading and testing different tools, you’ll eventually find the one you gravitate to the most. Exploring all messengers and their features is a fun experience – it’s best to make the most out of it.