Zoho throws hat in the ring, to launch WhatsApp alternative Arattai
While the app is already available for download, the company's CEO says it will soon be formally launched
Chennai-based Zoho is no newcomer to the software production arena and is well known for its online office suite, IT management software as well as advancements in Internet of Things (IoT) technology. The company's founder Sridhar Vembu teased some information about the app on his Twitter account on Sunday.
Our Arattai team asked me to not talk about our instant messaging app yet but since it is already being talked about 😂, I guess I can talk too.— Sridhar Vembu (@svembu) January 10, 2021
This is a friends-and-family trial release. We will do a formal launch in a few weeks. We have a lot more in store. Stay tuned!
Oddly enough, the app is already available for download on the Google Play Store where it has already racked up an impressive 4.5 star rating and more than 10,000 downloads at the time of writing this article. Users seem to have feedback about the user interface in their reviews, which is to be expected with pre-release software.
Also read: Ready to quit WhatsApp? Here are top 6 reasons why you should download Signal instead
Arattai was updated to version 0.10.44 on Monday, bringing Disappearing Messages, reminiscent of Signal's iconic feature that goes by the same name. The app's udpdate notes state that once this feature is enabled, messages in 1:1 chats and groups will disappear after 30 minutes.
The app also has another feature called Screen Security that prevents the app's contents from showing up in Android's recent app switcher, presumably to prevent other apps from being able to access what's going on inside the app. This feature is also currently available on both Signal and WhatsApp.
Arattai's Play Store description also states that customer privacy is their ‘number one priority' and that it makes sure that customer data is private. However, it does not specify whether messages between users will be encrypted from end-to-end, so that Zoho will not be able to read the messages while they pass through the servers.
While Vembu said that the app was currently being tested by ‘friends-and-family', he asked users to stay tuned for a formal launch in a few weeks.
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