ISLAMABAD,(Parliament Times): There are a number of different alternatives you can use to replace WhatsApp. Some of the well-known names include Telegram, Signal, Viber, and a few others, but there are not a lot of Pakistani names on the list. This is where ZapBuddy comes in, which is a solid Pakistani alternative to WhatsApp that has recently started gaining attention.
It not only connects you to your friends and family for free but also helps you find them in person through augmented reality. Let’s get into details. The interface is quite simple and similar to WhatsApp. You get all your chats on the main screen, while calls and contact lists are found in the adjacent tabs. The search button, settings menu, and the app lock can be seen just above the main screen and new chats can be created with the button on the bottom right. You can call your friends, video chat with them, send voice messages, photos, videos, documents, GIFs, and much more. There is no dark mode as of yet, but some phones can force dark mode on third-party apps.
ZapBuddy can be easily secured from prying eyes or nosy friends with a simple password. This password is easy to set up and you can also provide a recovery email in case you forget your password. ZapBuddy does not have fingerprint locking like WhatsApp, but it gives you more privacy options for personal information. You can hide your location, status, and profile photo from people who don’t have you added or choose specific people that can see them.
Much like WhatsApp, all chats are also end-to-end encrypted.
Font sizes can be customized in Multimedia Settings for people who have a hard time reading small fonts and you can also change chat backgrounds. The app gives you a handful of wallpapers to choose from but you can also set a custom wallpaper from your gallery or just pick a solid color. You can also set custom notifications for your contacts and add exceptions for people you want different settings for Customization options are lacking, but the developer promises to keep updating the app over time with new features and visual updates. ZapBuddy is yet to catch up with bigger names in the competition such as Telegram, WhatsApp, or Signal, but it is shaping up to be quite a reliable alternative to WhatsApp, not to mention it is one of the very few that are made in Pakistan. However, ZapBuddy is still going strong given how it is barely two years old and as mentioned earlier, promises to continue improving over time.
The app is available on Android as well as iOS with over a hundred thousand downloads and high ratings on each store. Keep in mind that if you want to use AR features, you need to download a separate AR package from the app store, which is completely free.