Chanty

WhatsApp vs Slack: How Our Team Spotted the Champ

WhatsApp vs Slack
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WhatsApp is one of the most famous mobile-first tools.

The messenger started out in 2009 as an idea to send notifications to friends. At the moment, 1.5 billion people use WhatsApp for both personal and work-related conversations.

The company has recently launched WhatsApp Business – a separate application for small companies. Steady progress in business communication industry makes WhatsApp a rival for other team chat apps.

Short disclaimer: Our team works passionately on Chanty, an AI-powered team chat. From time to time we try different team chat software and analyze their strengths and weaknesses as customers. The lessons we have learned help us develop a cleaner, faster and smarter tool.

Chanty team is well aware of Slack. We’ve tried a fair amount of team communication apps and described our experience in a series of articles: Slack alternatives, Discord vs Slack, Ryver vs Slack and many more in Team Chat Wars category. We also got excited to check how Slack can compete to WhatsApp Messenger.

Here and now I’ll share the most up-to-date WhatsApp vs Slack comparison. Let’s put down a puzzle together, shall we?

WhatsApp vs Slack features

If you are not interested in a detailed description of these two messengers, I offer you to check the following table. It shows all core features of Slack and WhatsApp. Plus, I’ve covered the latest information on WhatsApp Business you may have missed.

SlackWhatsAppWhatsApp Business
PricingFree plan

Standard plan (starts at $6.67 user/month)

Plus plan (starts at $12.50 user/month)

FreeFree
Message history limit10K searchable messages in Free planNoNo
Audio/video callsUnlimited 1:1 voice and video calls in Free plan

Up to 15 users in Paid plans

One-to-one audio and video callsOne-to-one audio and video calls
File storage limitFree plan: 5GB file storage for a team

Standard plan: 10GB per user

Plus plan: 20GB per user
Up to the storage space of your smartphone Up to the storage space of your smartphone
Money transferPayPal integrationComing soonNo
Business profilesNoNoYes
Limit for conversation membersAbout 8.5K members256256
Confirmed AccountsNoNoYes
File upload limit1GB100MB100MB
IntegrationsLimit of 10 integrations in Free plan

800+ integrations in Paid plans
NoNo

WhatsApp vs Slack design

Usually, I don’t pay much attention to how the interface of any messenger looks on different mobile platforms. WhatsApp made me change my mind.

WhatsApp Messenger mobile app interface (Android and iOS)WhatsApp Messenger mobile app interface (Android and iOS)

If somebody asked me to comment these two screenshots, I would never say that it was the same app. Colors, panels, and buttons are absolutely different. At the same time, the interface looks clean in both cases.

As for web and desktop applications, the user interface of WhatsApp and Slack has something in common. The left sidebar displays all your conversations, the right one – the history of opened dialogue. Other features are hidden behind different buttons.

WhatsApp Web interfaceWhatsApp Web interface

Slack Web interfaceSlack Web interface

To improve user-friendliness, Slack manages its space more efficiently. First, it divides conversations into Public, Private channels and direct messages, while WhatsApp offers only in one-to-one or group chats. Second, Slack lets you customize colors of the left sidebar improving user experience. Once you change the theme, new settings are automatically applied to your mobile application.

WhatsApp vs Slack conversations

Joining WhatsApp is easy: choose a country from the drop-down list, enter your phone number and confirm creating an account with a 6-digit code.

WhatsApp Messenger uses the data from your phone contacts and provides you with a list of people you can connect with this tool.

To verify whether a person uses WhatsApp or not, you should save a contact’s name and a phone number. If they don’t have a WhatsApp account, you can ask to download this app via email or another messenger.

Text and voice messages ensure the chat feature in WhatsApp. You can reply a message, star or forward it. I find the last feature confusing. It would be great to have an extra info about the sender of the message.

WhatsApp forward featureWhatsApp forward feature

Check your messages twice before sending, because for some strange reason WhatsApp has no Edit button! In case of a mistake, you can delete the message for everyone in a limited time period. If you succeed, there will be a corresponding notification.

Delete for everyone feature in WhatsAppDelete for everyone feature in WhatsApp

In case you need a direct access to a particular dialogue, you can create a home screen shortcut. This feature is very handy with a very long list of chats.

Apart from that, you can take photos or videos right in the app, add filters, stickers, text and send them to others, share a place or your live location on Google Maps.

Slack offers a wider set of features: sharing, starring, commenting, pinning, editing, deleting, following messages and adding reactions to them. The Remind me and Mark unread buttons won’t let you forget about a particular message.

Threads feature in SlackThreads feature in Slack

Urgently need to reach your colleagues in Slack group discussions? Make targeted announcements with @mentions. Threads, in turn, encourage a fully-fledged discussion tied to a specific message, link or file without distracting the general channel flow.

WhatsApp vs Slack video calls

WhatsApp provides one-to-one audio and video calls without screen sharing. The web and desktop applications lack the audio/video calling feature. That means you can make calls from your mobile phone only.

My colleague and I had video calls in WhatsApp several times. I heard her pretty well during our conversation, but ran into the overexposure problem. It might be my phone camera or some software-related issue, so mind that while using phone calls in WhatsApp.

Video call in WhatsAppVideo call in WhatsApp

Slack’s built-in video calls become a legit alternative if you don’t want to integrate your account with other video conferencing tools like Skype, appear.in or Blue Jeans.

Video call in SlackVideo call in Slack

Slack allows you to call one person at a time for free. Paid plan offers screen sharing feature and video conferences with up to 15 people. You can also let others draw on your screen and share the mouse control.

WhatsApp vs Slack notifications

We all have some moments at work when we need maximum privacy and time to focus. In WhatsApp Messenger, you can choose different settings for notifications from a single person or a group and set a ringtone with vibration for calls. There is also a mute feature that you can turn on for a particular conversation.

WhatsApp offers iPhone users to configure notification settings during the first launch. I suppose this popup should appear only once. Nevertheless, my colleague saw it every time he opened the messenger.

Popup notification settings in WhatsApp for iOSPopup notification settings in WhatsApp for iOS

In Slack, you can feel like a boss with all kind of notifications. Keep your concentration under control with Do Not Disturb mode, channel-specific settings, keyword alerts and many more options.

Notification preferences in SlackNotification preferences in Slack

You can also mute channels, ignore @mentions and set different settings for your mobile devices. Enjoy the silence or get notifications on what’s important for you.

WhatsApp vs Slack search

WhatsApp delivers a very simple search tool. You just type whatever you need to find in the search field, and WhatsApp shows you all relevant messages.

Search feature in WhatsAppSearch feature in WhatsApp

I tried to find messages with the letter h in order to test the search feature. As you can see, the results are pretty unpredictable.

Slack comes with more advanced search. You can specify results with a particular person, channel or time period.

Search options in SlackSearch options in Slack

Slack search within fileSlack search within file

What I highly appreciate is the search within documents. Office employees regularly share documents and it’s simply impossible to remember all file names. In Slack, you can recall words which the document contains for sure. And voila. Here it is.

WhatsApp vs Slack money transferring

While I was searching for the information about these two messengers, I came across the article about the official launch of WhatsApp’s new service. Express.co.uk writes: “WhatsApp has confirmed long-rumoured plans to roll-out its in-app payment system, allowing users to transfer money within the chat app.”

This limited service is now available only in India. Here is how this option looks like.

WhatsApp payment systemImage source

Slack doesn’t have a native in-app payment system. However, if you want to send and receive money right in the messenger, the PayPal integration is at your service.

Slack PayPal integrationImage source

Slack also offers chatbots for tracking financial operations. You can find more information on Slack website if necessary.

WhatsApp vs Slack integrations

Need to integrate your messenger with third-party apps? It’s up to Slack for sure. You can connect your account with 800+ different tools you use at work. This team messenger offers only 10 integrations in a Free plan. That is why you should be ready to pay if you need more.

WhatsApp Messenger doesn’t integrate with third-party apps. Are integrations a deal-breaker for you? The large amount of other team communication tools will help you out.

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WhatsApp Business

This article is more of WhatsApp Messenger versus Slack, but I couldn’t resist trying the new WhatsApp Business. This tool is free for now and is currently available on Android only. Sadly though, I didn’t find any mention of an iOS release.

WhatsApp Business follows the design of WhatsApp Messenger for Android yet comes with some extra features. It offers to create a business profile with the description, category, address on Google Maps, business hours, email and website.

WhatsApp Business profileWhatsApp Business profile

Quick replies, Greeting and Away messages help people speed up the response time. Labels, in turn, divide contacts and messages into easily renamed groups.

WhatsApp Business Messaging ToolsWhatsApp Business Messaging Tools

To sum up, WhatsApp Business strives to be more suitable for the needs of business communication. However, this messenger offers neither web nor desktop applications. That means WhatsApp Business has a big room for improvement for now.

WhatsApp vs Slack bottom line

WhatsApp is a great tool for personal communication. It helps people to stay in touch with friends and family, sharing funny photos and sending voice messages. However, this messenger lacks some vital features like detailed search, video calls for more than two people and the most important integrations. For the above reasons, I find this messenger not powerful enough for internal communication at work.

Slack is a great tool for businesses. It helps workers organize in-office conversations and connect apps they use daily. At the same time, this team chat tool imposes considerable limits in its Free plan (10 integrations, 5GB total storage and access to 10K last messages). If people don’t want to pay for more, they begin looking for more affordable alternatives.

We are building Chanty  – a simple AI-powered team communication tool that keeps balance between powerful chat features and reasonable pricing. Give our business chat a try to save your time while working smarter, not harder. Enjoy the clean and intuitive interface, unlimited searchable history, essential integrations and much more.

Haven’t tried it yet? Give Chanty a chance and join our growing community of early adopters!

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Nadiia Sheveleva

Nadiia Sheveleva is a part of the marketing team at Chanty - a simple AI-powered team chat. This powerful and free Slack alternative is aimed to increase team productivity and improve communication at work.
When not at work, you can find Nadiia learning French, reading books and knitting. You can follow Nadiia on Twitter @NadiiaSheveleva

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