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WhatsApp zooms to record 64 billion messages in one day

WhatsApp has hit a record high for messages sent and received in 24 hours, beating even New Year's Eve.

They're pretty chipper considering they can only afford one phone between them. nenetus/Shutterstock

64 million isn't cool. You know what's cool? 64 billion. That's how many messages were whatzapped through WhatsApp in a single day this week.

The popular cross-platform messaging service announced the record high on Twitter on Wednesday, adding up a global 20 billion messages sent and 44 billion messages received.

Admittedly that's a teeny bit of a fudge, as it counts a single message sent to a group as separate received messages -- which is why the number of sent and received messages is different -- but it's still an awful lot of time spent looking at the little green speech bubble on your phone. No wonder Facebook is dropping $19 billion on the service.

Now playing: Watch this: What's the deal with WhatsApp?

WhatsApp's new daily record beats even New Year's Eve, traditionally the time when most people send their love to friends and family. As 2013 ticked into 2014, WhatsApp users sent 18 billion messages, adding up to a total of 54 billion -- itself an increase of three times over the previous year.

The next step for WhatsApp is set to be voice chat for users, who number more than 465 million.

Rivals to WhatsApp include Viber, SnapChat, Samsung's own-brand messaging ChatOn, and BlackBerry Messenger , which has now belatedly come to Android and iPhone as well as BlackBerry devices.