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Viber adds GIF support, manual message backups, and more
It’s not as popular as WhatsApp, but Viber is still one of the heavyweights of the messaging ecosystem, with 750 million registered users and steadily growing.
To attract more users – and to keep existing ones happily locked inside its walled garden – Viber is adding new features to its Android and iOS apps.
Version 6.1 of Viber for Android brings support for displaying in-line animated GIFs in chat conversations. You can add GIFs from your image gallery (downloaded images), but it’s easier to simply copy the URL of the image and paste it in. Either way, Viber will auto-play the GIF for your viewing pleasure. It might seem like a small feature, but a surprisingly large number of chat apps – WhatsApp included – don’t display animated GIFs. So there’s that.
In the latest update, you can manually save your conversations and back them up to Google Drive. You can then quickly restore your archive if you move to a new device. Viber is also adding a way to send money to friends or family, straight from the chat window. The feature works thanks to a Western Union collaboration, and is currently available in the United States only. You can send cash for pickup at a Western Union location in 200 countries or directly to a bank account in 50 countries.
In case you haven’t received it yet, visit the Play Store and update Viber to the latest version.