Viber Challenges WhatsApp With New Celebrity-themed Feature

Talmon Marco the CEO of messaging service Viber attempt to integrate the viber-public-chats feature in Viber is ideal for those of us who love celeb-spotting around the SoHo area. Tapping into conversations about where your favorite celebrity is whether its to catch a quick peek of them eating a Cesar salad or even just to read about what sort of places they recommend in SoHo, this feature could be extremely useful.

The company has begun to usher in what it refers to “Public Chats” a messaging system that allows users to view conversations from their favorite celebrities. It’s not too dissimilar to what users already do on premier social platforms such as Twitter and Facebook but Marco feels that if Viber’s demand is to surpass that of its competitors it needs to tap into new features to appeal to potential users or poach users from its competitors.

It’s a feature that Marco hopes will grow rapidly as it has been reported by developers Gaming Realms affiliates to portal Total Gold that the global smartphone and tablet-installed base exceed the PC installed base during 2013 which means the sector that they are operating is only likely to get more competitive. So, Marco feels that if they are to finally get a stranglehold on the market, it needs to be now.

Marco has done a remarkable job getting the company to where it currently is in the global app market. Although sold Viber to Japanese company Rakuten for a reported $900 million earlier this year, he still has the drive to make Viber the major player in the messaging app industry.

There’s no doubt there’s some stiff competition out there for Viber most notably from WhatsApp that has more than 600 million monthly active users as opposed to Viber’s modest 200 million. But Marco’s latest challenge after selling Viber has been to create a feature that sets Viber apart from the crowd.

What also goes in Viber’s and Marco’s favor is that many business are likely to get behind such a feature and help drive new users to the app. In a place like SoHo where many business are competing in a very competitive market, the likelihood is that they will partner with celebs in order for them to be referenced by the aforementioned famous people. Just a simple mention by a celeb or Viber itself will help users discover new shops, restaurants or even bars that they may never have heard of before.

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