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After conquering the world, WhatsApp looks to small businesses

The Facebook-owned company announced WhatsApp Business, an app that aims to make communicating with small businesses easier.

WhatsApp Business.

WhatsApp is king of the messenger apps, with over a billion daily users. Now, the Facebook-owned company looks to better expand its reach to businesses.

WhatsApp Business is a free Android app released Thursday in the US, UK, Mexico, Italy and Indonesia, with more countries coming soon. WhatsApp did not state when or if an iOS version would be available.   

The app is for businesses to download -- the customer side will be integrated into the existing WhatsApp app. Business has a suite of features that makes it easier for small businesses to communicate with customers, including the ability to get verified business profiles, set up frequently asked questions, a quick reply feature and more. It'll also have desktop support. 

WhatsApp Business could be a big boon in developing nations, where more informal platforms, like WhatsApp, are used by small businesses to advertise, liaise and sell to customers. WhatsApp, pointing to a study done by Morning Consult, said over 80 percent of small businesses in India and Brazil use the app to help them grow their businesses.

WhatsApp is the second biggest messanging app in the world -- second only to Facebook Messenger, which had 1.2 billion users as of late April. 

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WhatsApp has been contacted for information on when an iOS app will be released.