Amazon is a world leader in the online retail space. After dominating in that segment, Amazon had launched the Alexa-powered Echo speaker and that too became a relatively big success. The e-commerce giant has been making forays into a varied range of sectors trying to capture the world technology market. Now, with the latest reports, Amazon appears to be venturing into the messaging space, as it is expected to take on WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger with a new app called Anytime. A report in Aftvnews said, “It is unclear how far along the new service is, but one customer said the survey seemed to imply it was a ready product.” According to the latest report, Amazon could soon launch the Anytime app soon, and the tech behemoth is already started to ‘survey customers’ about what they want in a new messaging app.
The new report has claimed that Amazon will come up with a range of features for the Anytime app, like video and voice chat, enabling users to play games with their friends as well as put filters over photos within the app itself. The company needs to do a lot of work ahead if it wishes to beat the current big firms in the segment. Even Google’s messaging service called ‘Allo’ struggled to have much effect when it launched in 2016. Currently, there is no information on when Amazon will officially announce ‘Anytime’ or when it will be publicly available. Till then, here is a list of things Amazon can bring in its Anytime app, to take on the biggies like WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger.
Encryption: WhatsApp, over time, has made its platform highly safe by introducing the encryption feature. The report about Amazon has used the words ‘private and secure’ and they suggest that encryption will be a part of Anytime. However, the leak says that the feature will not be used across the entire app. The app’s marketing material claims that users can ‘encrypt important messages (like bank account details)’. This will be a highly troublesome feature, given users will have to choose which messages they want to keep safe. The app needs to bring a better service to counter WhatsApp.
Alexa support: There is no information on whether the app will be able to integrate with Amazon’s voice activated speakers. But, given how the company has been trying to connect the Alexa with everything, we can expect users to get the same on Anytime as well. This feature will give users an option to access Alexa services on iPhone, Android and on desktops too.
Mobile number: The leak has suggested that users will not have to provide their mobile phone numbers attached to their Amazon account. The report says that you will be able to directly use the chat service using your friend’s name. This feature may give Amazon an edge over other messengers since WhatsApp and Facebook both need your number to log in the app. Facebook Messenger even wants to be the SMS service in your smartphones. This will be a refreshing new change, but it is hard to guess how the users will take to it.
GIFs: Facebook and WhatsApp both use the GIF feature on the app, but it is generally hard to find. This makes it cumbersome and people do not remember to use them most of the times. If Amazon decides to give GIF support in its Anytime app, we wish it decides to put it on the forefront, as it is a hugely popular feature on most social media platforms.
Amazon Prime Video: It will be interesting to see if Amazon will include the Prime Video feature on the app. This essentially means that users should be enabled to watch TV shows and movies together on the messaging app as well. This will serve both the purposes, making Anytime popular, and increase the demand for Amazon Prime video service. The leak suggests that Anytime will provide “new ways to hang out” as it will let users share music on the app too. So it is not a far cry to speculate that the company may include the video feature as well.