How to find the right instant messenger

How to find the right instant messenger

Instant messengers offer many options for communicating with relatives and acquaintances: for example, sending text messages to grandchildren or exchanging pictures and videos with holiday acquaintances. But how do you choose the right message transmitter from the multitude of offers? What do you have to consider when installing instant messengers? And how do you protect your own privacy? The following article answers these questions.

Before deciding on a particular program, it makes sense to find out which program your own circle of friends mainly uses. A look at your own family also helps here: Since many young people now use instant messengers, it is worth asking your own children and grandchildren which program they are using. Because without friends in the friends list, an instant messenger makes no sense. Children and grandchildren may also be able to help with questions about use.

If you have decided on a specific instant messenger, you can download and install the program on the provider’s website. After the installation you can access an existing user account or create a new one. Instant messengers for smartphones or tablets can be downloaded as an app from the respective provider shop such as Google Play or the AppStore.

When installing an instant messenger, you should make sure that you read everything carefully, look at it and click away any options you don’t want. When installing programs, providers often try to install additional applications such as toolbars or to change settings such as the start page in the browser or search options on the computer. While this is not harmful in most cases, it can be quite annoying.

When creating a new user account, care should be taken to only enter the data that is to be seen later by other people. It is also important to adjust the privacy settings after starting the program for the first time, i.e. to specify who is allowed to see which personal data such as telephone numbers, email addresses and names. Most programs already have settings that are preset, but these are often selected so that all data is visible to all users. The privacy options can often be found under the menu item Settings or Profile.

Most of today’s instant messengers tend to expand the variety of options. This can lead to too much information and setting options and sometimes confuses even experienced users. Some providers also change the language within a program, i.e. some parts of the program are in English, others in German. This confuses and does not help the user to better orient himself. For absolute beginners in matters of instant messaging, it is therefore recommended to seek support from your own family, friends or acquaintances. It’s often better together.


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