File photo illustration shows icons of messaging applications WhatsApp
File photo illustration shows icons of messaging applications WhatsApp, Laiwang and WeChat, or Weixin, on the screen of a smart phone in Beijing (Reuters/BARRY HUANG) Reuters

Despite past travails, Kik remains one of the most popular messaging apps. It’s free and works at lightning speed connecting with friends in real-time.

Kik creates the instant ability to message anyone provided users at both ends use the Kik app. Despite all the applause, Kik seems to disappoint many owing to the growth of spam accounts in its service.

A good way to avoid the problem is to consider other app platforms. Have a look at five great alternatives to Kik available in the U.S. and in other parts of the world (Also read here):

  1. Line

Pic coutesy: Milward

Company name: Line Corporation

Available on: iOS, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Android (free)

While it originated in Asia, Line quickly grew popular enough to do great in the messaging space across its borders. It’s a great alternative to Kik because of its massive user-base. One thing that makes it hugely popular is that anybody can connect to the official accounts of their favourite celebrities, also available on Line. Share photos, chat, post updates and make video/voice call on Line.

2. Whatsapp

Pic Courtesy: Reuters/Dado Ruvic

Company name: WhatsApp

Available on: Windows Phones, Blackberry, Android, iOS, Symbian (free)

WhatsApp is ‘BIG’ and that was proven last year when Facebook purchased the app at a massive $19 billion. Though being a simple messaging service provider, it’s got 900 million users. Download it for free and use it for a year, but from the second year you’ll have to pay a negligible fee of $0.99 every year to avail its service. The app offers lots of fun with video/voice sharing, image sharing, emoji sharing, chat and calls.

3. WeChat

Pic Courtesy: Reuters/ Pet Ar Kujundzic

Company name: BlackBerry

Available on: iOS, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, Android (free)

WeChat is more than just sharing, chatting and having fun with friends. It’s a whole new discovery platform that lets you find new friends, too. Simply shake your phone and a stranger pops up with whom you chat to find out if you’re compatible. If not, move on to the next person. It’s interactive and offers lots of stickers from your favourite music shows, movies and more.

4. Viber

Pic Courtesy: Reuters

Company name: Viber Media

Available on: Windows Phone, Android, BlackBerry, iOS (free)

Viber offers a host of features not found in other messaging apps. Quite similar to WhatsApp, you can get connected with friends and people whose numbers you’ve saved in your contact list. Call, chat, share videos, photos, audios with loved ones on Viber. The app allows you to make call to friends not on Viber via ViberOut. Enjoy lots of emoticons and stickers available for free.

5. Snapchat

Pic Courtesy: Reuters/Eric Thayer

Company name: Snapchat

Available on: Android, iOS (free)

Unlike regular messaging apps, Snapchat lets you instantly share images and videos and chat with friends. You quickly take a photo or capture a video, add some text and send it to friends via Snapchat. Friends can view the content for only a few seconds before the messages disappear. In all respects, Snapchat adds a unique meaning to your chatting experience. Nonetheless, Snapchat is only dominant in the U.S. but is catching up with other countries too.

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