✏ Advantages/Disadvantages of Google Messenger over Signal

With Update 1.5.1, Google Messenger was included with Fairphone OS.

What are the advantages/disadvantages of Google Messenger over Signal?

Advantages of Google Messenger

Disadvantages of Google Messenger

  • Signal offers a decent encryption amongst Signal users (web-based messages, not SMS) - this encryption standard meanwhile has been adopted by other widely used messengers

It’s a wiki. So you can click on the green pencil above the post to edit this post.

This might be of interest here: https://theintercept.com/2016/06/22/battle-of-the-secure-messaging-apps-how-signal-beats-whatsapp/.

I think the key points of Signal are the same compared to whatsapp: Signal uses always E2E encryption, it collects no metadata at all (Google only sees the time you communicate but not with whom, since the official version of Signal makes use of GCM for push notification), no unencrypted backups or anything.

When you keep in mind that Google and Facebook (Whatsapp) make money with your data it is completely understandable why they will always try to get as much as possible of it. That’s why I always prefer Signal because they simply have another business model and won’t try to circumvent your security at any point. Of course the big companies try to look as secure as possible (they use Signal E2E encryption), but in my point of view this is only “greenwashing”.


I haven’t used Signal so far, instead using Threema and the standard SMS app included in FP Open OS. But now I was curious and looked at Signal - does it in fact replace the standard SMS app and if so, what are the advantages/disadvantages of using Signal rather than the FP Open OS text messaging app? And can I then send text messages to people who don’t have Signal (using Signal) and if so, how is this better than doing it using the standard app?

I always assumed Signal was something akin to WhatsApp and Threema, but this doesn’t seem to be the case…?

Yes, it replaces the standard SMS app and can send/receive SMS messages.

Yes. See above: Signal is able to send/receive SMS messages.

Signal has dual functionality: It is a SMS app, but it is also a messenger. The advantage is that your look and feel is the same for SMS and messenger contacts. With WhatsApp/Threema, you have to use a different app for your SMS contacts.

We have a thread with advantages and disadvantages of certain messenger apps. Look if you satisfy your thirst of knowledge there. But if your thirst of knowledge is not satisfied, someone has to start a thread “Advantages/Disadvantages of Signal over the default SMS app”.


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