So, we've explained what Kik is and what it's used for, given you some safety tips for using Kik, and gone over the potential costs of using Kik. So, let's add it all up and answer the big question: will you have a fun time kicking it with Kik Messenger, or will you want to give this particular social messaging app the boot? Here's a breakdown of what we feel are the app's strong and weak points.
Kick it for free — The app is free to download, install, and use. Just watch your data plan if you don't have a Wi-Fi connection.
Accessible and private — Kik works on most major mobile devices, and you don't need to verify your account with a phone number, like some other apps like Kik. Your user name covers for your other information, so only people who know it (or your real name) can talk to you.
Communication options galore — There are several different ways to send a message on Kik. Send a text message! Upload or take a photo! Record a video message! Draw a picture! Create a meme! Use emoticons! Pick a GIF to speak for you! Share a web page! How you want to get your message across is up to you!
One isn't the loneliest number — Even if nobody you know is around to chat right now, you can still have a good time by yourself on Kik! You can browse a number of Kik-themed websites through the app, where you can play games, get information, or have a laugh! You can even talk to automated programs if you're bored, and they'll do many of the same things!
Your call cannot be completed as dialed — Many apps like Kik have the ability to make phone calls without using up your phone minutes or paying high long distance charges. Kik doesn't have this feature; sending video messages back and forth is as close as it gets.
Walled garden of a Web — Though Kik has the ability to surf the Internet from inside the Kik application itself, it can only go to websites that sponsor and are configured to use Kik. For example, you won't be able to get to something like Google Search on Kik.
Nameless and shameless — Though Kik's privacy features have made it attractive for young people and the privacy-conscious alike, Kik has had problems with people taking advantage of its privacy features in order to use the app in abusive ways. Fortunately, we have some advice on how to stay safe and private using Kik.
The bottom line: 7.5/10
Kik stands out among some of its other social messaging app peers for a couple of reasons. As we noted, it has enhanced accessibility and privacy features, plus it's totally free to use. In addition, it has more options than most social messenger apps for getting a message across, and you can use it to browse the Internet or talk to automated "bots" if you're alone and bored.
Kik has a few notable flaws, though. The inability to make phone calls through it is a glaring omission when compared with other apps of its kind (though is somewhat necessary in order to provide privacy). Also, the web browser within Kik only has a limited number of Kik-compatible places to which it can take you; it's not going to let you access the entire Internet. And the ability for its privacy features to be abused means that you have to stay vigilant in order to avoid or shut down troublemakers who may be using Kik.
Overall, Kik provides a unique experience when it comes to social messaging apps, but its appeal to younger people and fans of social media sacrifices some of its potential functionality.
Well, those are our thoughts on Kik. Would you rather take a kick at the can yourself and see what you think of Kik? Our next lesson will get you started by showing you how to download and install Kik!