Deutsche Telekom announced the availability of the Joyn platform to all its iPhone users, giving them access to the operator-supported messaging platform along with Android customers, who already had access to the service via a downloadable app.
"Joyn is particularly easy to use," said DT Germany board member Niek Jan van Damme. "I'm glad that we can now offer our customers this service as a beta version and continue the messaging standard of the future." DT and other operators have embraced Joyn as a way to counter over-the-top messaging apps.
DT highlighted the group chat function of Joyn, which allows up to 20 participants to communicate with each other and send messages of up to 1,000 characters. The application also makes it possible to switch the camera on during a conversation and start sending photos or transferring live video.
Going forward, DT said it will pre-install Joyn on several of the Android and Windows Phone 8 smartphones in its smartphone lineup. Customers will be able to test the service at no additional cost during the promotional phase that runs until the end of August 2013.
Joyn has been positioned as the mobile operators' way of answering the threat of OTT players, and Deutsche Telekom alluded to that in its announcement. "Users can rest assured that their own data and that of their friends will not be used for advertising purposes or passed on to third parties," the company said. "This makes Joyn an attractive and extremely secure alternative to services like WhatsApp."
DT also said the data sent will not be deducted from the volume of data permitted by the user's tariff, and bandwidth will remain unrestricted. The operator said another advantage of Joyn compared to competitors' services is that the smartphone address book remains stored locally on the device and no copy will be uploaded and saved onto a global server.
While Joyn is gradually getting rolled out in North America, Spain and South Korea, it's not as widespread as many would have hoped. A DT spokesman told FierceWireless:Europe in February that the integration of Joyn into its network architecture was very complex and taking more time than expected.
Vodafone Germany launched its Joyn service last year in beta format on the Android platform.
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