Popular instant messaging application WhatsApp is doing away with its $0.99 annual fee as it explores new services.
WhatsApp founder Jan Koum made the announcement at the DLD conference in Munich, Germany on Monday.
The messaging service – which was bought by Facebook for $19bn in 2014. – has also explained the move in a blog post.
“For many years, we’ve asked some people to pay a fee for using WhatsApp after their first year,” says the WhatsApp blog post.
“As we’ve grown, we’ve found that this approach hasn’t worked well. Many WhatsApp users don’t have a debit or credit card number and they worried they’d lose access to their friends and family after their first year.
“So over the next several weeks, we’ll remove fees from the different versions of our app and WhatsApp will no longer charge you for our service,” the blog post added.