The mobile messaging war is on


The mobile messaging war is on

The competition in the mobile messaging space is really heating up. In February, Japanese ecommerce giant Rakuten bought Viber for $900 million, and Facebook paid $19 billion in cash and stock to acquire messaging company WhatsApp.

Last week, Alibaba, China’s dominant ecommerce firm, spent $215 million for a minority stake in Tango, a US-based messaging and free-calling app. Tango currently has 200 million registered users and 70 million active users. The round values Tango at $1 billion to $2 billion. In an interview by Reuters, Tango co-founder Eric Setton said that he believes that his company, which also offers games, multimedia sharing and other content, would eventually outperform Whatsapp, which offers only text and voice communications.

In addition to fuelling competition, the new funding underscores the increased investor interest in mobile communications and gives Alibaba a foothold in the messaging market as the company files for an initial public offering in New York in April.

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