With a total of over 1.5 billion users, only about 2 million people use WhatsApp outside in China. No doubts, WhatsApp is arguably the best instant messaging app ever. But WeChat, according to reliable stats and figures puts up a really good fight. According to stats obtained from ExpandedRamblings, WeChat is just as used as WhatsApp:
- Number of Daily Active Users: WhatsApp (1 billion) | WeChat (902 million)
- Total number of users: What’s app (1.5 billion) | WeChat (1.057 billion)
But is it (WeChat) as good as WhatsApp? Maybe. Are there any features that WeChat users enjoy that isn’t supported on WhatsApp? Yes, there are. This article aims to point out 5 cool features WeChat has that WhatsApp doesn’t support. Or to rephrase: 5 features that might make you dump WhatsApp for WeChat. **shrugs**
Navigating to the “Discover” section if your WeChat app, you should see a “Shake” button. Clicking it would prompt you to shake your smartphone to meet new people. Yes, you can literally wiggle your phone side-to-side to make new friends.
And how does this work?, you might ask. Well, WeChat doesn’t just magically display a new person on your screen to meet, it connects you to a random WeChat user also ‘shaking’ their phone, wanting to meet someone new at the same time as you. You shake, a random stranger shakes, WeChat picks up the message that you both are bored (or not), want to meet a new WeChat buddy and links you guys up.
On WhatsApp, the best shot you have at connecting with someone new is to.have the person’s contact saved on your device or you cross paths with the ‘stranger’ in a group or something.
With WeChat’s Shake feature, you can meet users who are close by, or in another country. Before WeChat connects you with a new friend through Shake, it send you a notification first which means you can’t talk to him/her without their approval or permission.
2. Private Group
In addition to allowing group admins create public chats rooms or group like WhatsApp, WeChat also allows users create a private or secret group protected by a 4-digit passcode. Only users with this passcode can join your private group chat.
To create a private group, click on the “+” icon in the Chats section of the WeChat app, click “Group chat”, “Join private group”, input the 4 digits code, and tap “Join this Group”.
3. Drift Bottle
Drift Bottle is a fun feature on WeChat which allow users send and receive messages from random users across the world. This feature is more like sending a digital message in a virtual bottle and throwing it into a virtual ocean where it floats till a random WeChat user chooses to pick it up. Interestingly, you can also pick up other users’ drift bottles and read their messages.
This is a digital version of a message-in-a-bottle, through which you can send and receive text and voice messages to and from totally random WeChat users around the world.
To start throwing and picking up Drift bottles, go to the “Me” tab in your WeChat App, click on “Settings”, then “General”, “Features”, and then turn the feature on.
Afterward, navigate to the “Discover” >> “Drift Bottle” >> click “Throw” to send a voice or text message >> or “Pick Up” to open up a random user’s message.
4. QR Code
On WeChat, you can easily add friends in seconds by scanning their QR code. Launch your WeChat scanner within the app, scan a friend’s QR code within the frame and that’s it! Your friends can also add you instantly by scanning your personal WeChat QR code.
To find your WeChat QR code, go to the “Me” tab >> Click on your Profile Photo >> “My QR code”.
Unlike WhatsApp, this saves you the stress of having to save a friend’s contact first before you can message them.
5. In-App Wallet
With WeChat Pay services, you can literally pay for anything using the WeChat app. WeChat comes with a “Wallet” that allows you manage payment directly on your phone, pay for goods and services, book flights and hotels, hail a cab, send money to friends, pay for food in a restaurant etc.
You can easily setup WeChat Wallets by adding your local/foreign cards, verifying your identity, and connect your bank accounts to use WeChat payments.