Now that you we've shared the details of how WeChat works, and you’ve read our article on safety and security while using the app, you may be starting to decide if WeChat is right for you. We’ve got you covered in this article, where we’ll lay out all of the pros and cons of WeChat, and explain how they will affect your user experience.
- Fully free to use – WeChat is free to download, install, sign up for, and use, and only charges for completely optional in-app purchases of emoji stickers you can add to your conversations. It is also not limited in any way by what you can do, so you can talk, text, send pictures, voice call, and video call as much as you want.
- Simple layout that’s easy to use – WeChat is very simple, and doesn’t have too many confusing bells and whistles that make it difficult for you to do what you really want – talk to your friends. Simply tap on a contact’s name and start typing to message them instantly. To get more advanced, tap the + button to change to other methods of communication. The app could not be simpler to use!
- Used by hundreds of millions of people – WeChat has over 700 million active users, all over the world. Though extremely popular in China, over 70 million active users are located elsewhere. You’re sure to find someone on your contact list using WeChat, and the app can automatically tell you who you know that is using WeChat, and help you connect with them instantly.
- Many ways to communicate – WeChat offers many ways for you to interact with your contacts, including instant text messaging, voice calls, video calls, picture messaging, sharing contact details, and acts in a way as a social media platform. There are plenty of ways to communicate to satisfy all of your social moves.
- Must have a working Internet connection – Though you can save plenty without the need for a phone plan, WeChat requires an Internet connection to work. If you don’t have access to free Wi-Fi, you’ll need to subscribe to your own plan. And ensure you monitor your usage, as video chatting can really use up your allotted Internet data for the month.
- Loose privacy settings – When you first sign up, your privacy settings generally allow for other users to find you, and see you nearby. They can also find your profile, and request to add you, not needing to know you at all. Ensure you check your privacy settings as soon as you create your account, so make sure they are set to a level you are comfortable with.
- Unique features not innovative – WeChat has some interesting features you won’t find in other messaging apps, but none of them are particularly helpful or enhance your experience. “Moments” allows you to save your favorite messages, posts, and incoming pictures, and share them with others, and you can also update your status. WeChat is not focussed on social media however, so these kinds of added features do not offer anything new or particularly useful to its users.
The Bottom Line: 8/10
WeChat is one of the most popular Internet-based messaging platforms for a reason. It’s entirely free to use, and isn’t limited in any way. You can message as much as you want, and use the app whenever you like. You have plenty of ways to choose from to communicate, and the simple layout of the app makes it easy for anyone to learn – just jump right in and start messaging!
Make sure you have a working Internet connection however, and keep an eye on your Internet data usage, as video calls especially can really rack up your usage. You should also keep an eye on your privacy settings, as they tend to allow for a lot of connection with users you likely don’t even know. Make sure you always keep your safety and privacy in mind when using WeChat!
And that’s our rundown of WeChat. If you think that WeChat may be right for you, check out our next tutorial on how to download and install the app, and then be sure to read our step-by-step tutorial on how to use WeChat. If you think there may be something better out there for you, check out our article on the best apps like WeChat to learn more.