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Mobile World Congress 2014: Libon Open Chat takes on WhatsApp with HTML5 IM tech

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Mobile World Congress 2014: Libon Open Chat takes on WhatsApp with HTML5 IM tech

1:22 /

The new feature in the Libon app lets you IM with contacts, even if they're not Libon users themselves.

Hello. I'm Luke Westaway for CNET here at Mobile World Congress 2014 in Barcelona. We're taking a look at the Libon chat services' brand new feature. Now, Libon is a chat app. It also does your voicemail, but it's got something new that it's just introduced, and it's called Open Chat technology. And what it lets you do is start doing a free IM conversation with someone who is in your phone's contacts even if they are not a fellow Libon user. So with a service like WhatsApp, which uses your phone's contacts, the other person needs to also be on WhatsApp for you to be able to send those free messages. However, using this, you simply send the message to the phone number you wanted to arrive at, and that other contact will then get sent a link which takes them to that phone or tablet's browser where there's an HTML5 chat window. And through that, they can do all the usual IM features like messages or sending pictures. You can even send voice clips and location data. And what that means is basically that you can talk to people who aren't using the same service for free. It's pretty cool, and I would like to see it spread to other services like WhatsApp or maybe Viber. I'm Luke Westaway for CNET here at Mobile World Congress 2014. Check out CNET.com for more.

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