After larger competitor WhatsApp’s revised terms of service raised eyebrows on social media, Signal and Telegram messaging apps are seeing a sudden rise in demand.
On Wednesday, WhatsApp, which uses Signal’s encryption technology, laid out new terms asking users to consent to let user data, including their phone number and location, be collected by Facebook Inc and its subsidiaries.
Some privacy activists challenged the trend on Twitter to “accept our data grab or get out” and suggested users turn to apps such as Signal and Telegram.
The popularity of Signal shot up further on Thursday after it was endorsed by Elon Musk, who has one of Twitter’s most-followed accounts and the top boss of the micro-blogging site, Jack Dorsey.
In the last two days, more than 100,000 users have installed Signal via Apple and Google app stores, while Telegram has collected nearly 2.2 million downloads according to Sensor Tower, a data analytics company.
In the first seven days of 2021, new WhatsApp installs dropped 11 percent compared to the previous week, but that still amounted to an estimated 10.5 million downloads globally, Sensor Tower said.