People Flee WhatsApp, And BiP Becomes Popular When The Turkish President Advocated It


Humans are social beings, and with the internet, communications have never been easier.

With the internet and instant messaging apps, people can communicate with others that are half way across the globe in an instant.

Travelling at a roughly the speed of light, data can be transmitted thousands of miles, allowing people to text and call without limits.

And the most popular platforms that have long provided such privilege and luxury, is WhatsApp, the messaging app owned by Facebook.

Then one day, WhatsApp started notifying people about a privacy policy update, which aims to make it clear that the messaging app can share data with other Facebook companies.

Quickly and almost simultaneously, users around the world began to question WhatsApp's intention.


WhatsApp emphasized that its platform features end-to-end encryption, meaning neither it nor Facebook can see users' messages. It also doesn't keep logs of who users are calling or messaging. WhatsApp said it can't see a person's shared location and that it doesn't share user's contacts with Facebook.

But no matter how hard WhatsApp and Facebook tried to explain themselves, people don't seem to care.

Users of WhatsApp all around the world began a mass exodus, most notably to alternatives like Signal and Telegram..

And here, BiP is one another rising alternatives, as the app experienced a surge of 4.6 million new users is just a few days.

At this time, its number of users is around 100 million users, a number that is below Signal or Telegram, let alone comparing it to WhatsApp's huge 2 billion active users. But BiP the messaging app from Turkey, received a huge attention after President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan advocated it.

The President said that he left WhatsApp and opened an account in Telegram and BiP. The Turkish Ministry of National Defense has announced that the Ministry is also moving information groups to BiP.

Developed by mobile phone operator Turkcell, the company's General Manager Murat Erkan said that the figure for new users was eclipsing after the day WhatsApp updated its privacy terms.

"WhatsApp both takes your data and says, ‘I will share it with Facebook.’ This is a very wrong situation. It will share it with Facebook today and with someone else tomorrow. Just like you take care of your money, your wallet, you must take care of your data."

"Some 6.4 million people have switched to BiP since Friday. In this environment, BiP is seen as a safe haven. We are going head-to-head with Telegram right now."

“A bad neighbor makes one a property owner,” said Erkan, referring to a Turkish saying.

And as explained by Turkcell's Vice President Ataç Tansuğ, users may continue using BiP without the obligation to share their data with third parties.

“BiP have been developed by Turkcell engineers since 2013 has been welcomed with a great interest within the past 3 days. We store the data of our BiP users in the most highly secured Turkcell data centers within the boundaries of Turkey. What is important in communication applications is that, for the service to be able to be rendered, the necessary data are received from users, processed within their approvals, and shared to the extent necessary for provision of the service. For instance, BiP being a communication application requests permission for access to directory in order to be able to provide its users with call and messaging services.”

All user data is stored in its data centers in Istanbul and Ankara, two large cities in Turkey that hold international security certification.

And emphasizing that the company does not receive, process and share any data without permission of users at BiP, Tansuğ added that:

“All our users may feel at ease on this subject. We do not in any way discriminate between our users in 192 countries. We listen to customer feedback and act in the swiftest manner to meet their demands. Hence, if there is something to be remedied, we are ready to do our best to remedy the same.”

BiP that has already been made available in 192 countries through official app stores, offers uninterrupted and secure communication with its messaging, voice and video call features.

With Digicel bringing BiP into the use of its customers in 32 countries in which it operates by means of the partnership Lifecell Ventures, BiP has over 1 million users in the Caribbean region alone.

In Turkey and its surrounding countries, as well as in some other countries like Bangladesh, BiP has become the star of instant messaging apps, ranking high at the top as the most popular in terms of downloads.

The rise in BiP happens after Turkish Competition Board said that it launched an investigation into WhatsApp and its owner Facebook after the messaging app asked users to agree to allow Facebook collect user data including phone numbers and locations.

Following WhatsApp’s forced update in its privacy policy, users in Turkey have started to complain, and created the hashtag #DeletingWhatsapp.

Over 100,000 posts were shared in a day in Turkey alone.

Among the alternatives to WhatsApp that are becoming increasingly popular, besides BiP, include Signal, Telegram, imo, Dedi, Skype and many more.

A top Turkish defense company Havelsan has also developed an alternative it calls ileti, a messaging app that is marketed as the first app developed using Whitebox Cryptography (WBC).

Among them all, Telegram is at this time considered the “largest refuge” for those seeking a private and secure communications platform.

Further reading: WhatsApp Delays Privacy Policy Update Amid Confusion And Mass User Exodus