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Whatsapp releases desktop apps for Mac and Windows

WhatsApp, the Facebook-owned messaging service that claims a billion users, has launched desktop clients for Mac and Windows. The release comes about 15 months after WhatsApp released its first web app.

People who have already been using WhatsApp on their web browsers will find that software isn’t significantly different. The company said in an announcement “our desktop app is simply an extension of your phone,” with all messages synced between devices.

WhatsApp’s success in countries like India, Brazil, and South Africa is of course driven by the high penetration of smartphones in those markets.

It also gives power users including people who rely on WhatsApp for work communications–desktop options helps it compete against other messaging services, like iMessenger, WeChat, Telegram and Skype.

WhatsApp is currently testing out B2C accounts, which would give it a new revenue source after dropping its 99 cent annual subscription fee.