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Thread: What's app. Please help me decide if it is a good idea

  1. #1
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    What's app. Please help me decide if it is a good idea

    I have a new iPhone 6S Plus and love it. I have a minimum phone plan with Bell Canada with unlimited texts and photo with time-of-day limits for unlimited local calls = a minimum plan so NO data.
    I had read that iMessage would allow photos to another iPhone or Apple device using wifi. Deep in the help section of iMessage of the iPhone, it does say that the carrier will/may limit MMS without a data plan.

    I visited an Apple store where a rep was surprised that iMessage would not transmit my photos from an iPhone to an iPhone without a data plan. It simply states undelivered under my message. I visited the Bell store and the rep there said that he tells every customer he sells to that no MMS messages without a data plan. He has many people coming in to ask the same question I asked every day.

    Went back to the Apple rep who finally suggested that given my phone plan I could consider What'sapp. Never having had contact with it, I cautiously downloaded it. It is now owned by Facebook. I set the privacy settings to the maximum limit and will only include my kids.

    How does What'sapp work? Why will it transmit photos when iMessage will not? I tried to find out more about it like price beyond the free app.

    Any info would be most welcome including any cautions using it.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  2. #2
    Senior Member jp1's Avatar
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    I have never used what's app but assume that it sends over wifi if you are connected to it. It's possible that the problem with iMessaging to another iphone is that your phone doesn't know yet that the other phone is in fact an iphone. Try having the other person message you first and then try responding. I've been in Canada a couple of times where I didn't pay for international service and was able to leave my phone in airplane mode and just use wifi and could iMessage people just fine, but it was all friends and SO who I routinely iMessage.

  3. #3
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    I am able to text other iPhones with iMessage using wifi but cannot send photos. The Bell rep said an MMS which means photos or video requires a data plan. The cellular on my iPhone is turned off

    I have downloaded the free What'sapp app and have contacted both my kids to test it. It works on wifi which is what I use. It is all free. I am being very cautious. Trying to figure out how it works. Does the message go to a cloud or directly to their phones. How is it possible that I can send with wifi a photo taken with the camera icon on the app of my phone to another What'sapp equipped phone without a data plan?

    Quote Originally Posted by jp1 View Post
    I have never used what's app but assume that it sends over wifi if you are connected to it. It's possible that the problem with iMessaging to another iphone is that your phone doesn't know yet that the other phone is in fact an iphone. Try having the other person message you first and then try responding. I've been in Canada a couple of times where I didn't pay for international service and was able to leave my phone in airplane mode and just use wifi and could iMessage people just fine, but it was all friends and SO who I routinely iMessage.
    Last edited by razz; 3-27-18 at 8:47am.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  4. #4
    Senior Member SteveinMN's Avatar
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    A few things:
    - All smartphones (iPhones and others) are technologically capable of transmitting information through either the cellular network or through Wi-Fi. It's two different roads to the same place.
    - Most smartphones can be set to go through the cellular network if a Wi-Fi signal is not strong enough; most smartphones also let you decide which apps may use cellular data if that's all that's available at the time you use the app (default is all).
    - Without cellular data available, smartphones are limited to voice calls and pure-text messages (which run on interstices of the cellular network) or to whichever apps can run over Wi-Fi. I'm not real familiar with Bell Canada's plans other than a quick look at their Web site, which seems to define picture messaging (MMS) and messenger apps (Whatsapp, iMessage, Facebook Messenger, twitter, Instagram, etc.) as requiring cellular data.
    - The messaging apps I mentioned above (and others) require both the initiator of the message and the recipient of the message to have the app and have access to either Wi-Fi or cellular data. razz could be using Whatapp over Wi-Fi and the others she's communicating with can be using cellular data; that's fine. iMessage works only between devices running iOS (the iPhone/iPad operating system).

    If razz's cell plan does not include data (which, frankly, is unusual in that most carriers will not add a smartphone to their network without a data plan), then iMessage will work only on Wi-Fi. Ditto for Whatsapp, etc.

    So I guess the central question is which plan razz has. If, indeed, it offers no cellular data, then the only messaging available will be pure-text messages over the phone or messaging apps only when connected to Wi-Fi. razz has to decide if that's enough access.
    If Americans expended even a fraction of the energy on civic engagement that we spend on consumer ideology, our democracy would be much healthier. Can you imagine people camping out to vote? -- Charles Roberts, Amherst, Mass., Nov. 25, 2006

  5. #5
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Thanks, Steve. You confirmed what the Bell rep told me.

    Since I just recently downloaded and connected to what's app and have sent a few pictures taken with the icon included in the app, I am going to check my billing to see if data has been triggered by default. One of the kids has a iPhone and the other an Android. I was told I have access to data but only if I turn it on.
    My phone is my organizer, camera, text, email, website and generally first contact in wifi settings - an emergency phone that goes with me everywhere.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

  6. #6
    Junior Member Summer's Avatar
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    I find WhatsApp the most user-friendly chat app, I can get all I need with it: text, call, group chat, etc without being bothered by pop up full-screen advertisement. Such a great way to keep in touch with family and friends (I'm living away from home). However, there are actually many alternatives for WhatsApp for different purposes. For example, Viber can be used to chat with kids cause' it has lots of cute and funny icons Telegram is used for business to create team chat. LINE is very popular in Asia and its icons are great! I just have them all installed on my phone to try out, sometimes I chat with the same friend on 2 different apps...weird me
    “Salt in the air, sand in my hair.”

  7. #7
    Senior Member razz's Avatar
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    Thanks, Summer. I did test out Whatsapp. It will send text images without cellular using wifi. i was cautioned about Telegram program which is based in Russia - take that for what it's worth.
    Gandhi: Happiness is when what you think, what you say and what you do are in harmony .

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