A few months ago, India, like many countries around the world, went into a countrywide lockdown to contain the spread of Covid-19. This resulted in widespread panic buying. Stores ran out of essentials, and customers asked shop owners to update them if they’d restocked bread, eggs, certain vegetables… Store owners turned to messaging app WhatsApp to relay these updates.
It’s no coincidence that WhatsApp was a collective choice. Launched in 2009, the Facebook-owned app has 400 million daily active users in India. And it comes in two forms:
- The regular consumer-facing app used to communicate with one’s contacts.