The popular video-sharing app could launch a feature this year that would let groups of users exchange messages, a new report says.
Douyin, the Chinese version of TikTok, has offered group chats since 2019, but parent company ByteDance is now evaluating when and where to expand the feature, the news agency reported Wednesday.
If it’s launched in the US, it could make TikTok a stronger rival to Facebook, which has built a digital messaging juggernaut out of its Messenger, WhatsApp and Instagram apps.
But TikTok’s group chats would likely be unencrypted, Reuters reports — a distinction that could give Facebook an edge with users concerned about security.
ByteDance discussed brining group messages to TikTok last year but held off after the app was banned in India and threatened by then-President Donald Trump, one source told Reuters.
Security was a key concern for Trump — his administration alleged that Americans’ TikTok user data could be shared with the Chinese government, claims the app has denied.
TikTok did not immediately respond to a request for comment Wednesday.
Source: New York Post