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VAT Hike: How Nigerians Can Reduce The Amount They Spend On Phone Calls And Texts

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VAT hike leads to an increase in the cost of phone calls and text messaging in Nigeria. This is because the federal government began the implementation of the 7.5 percent Value Added Taxes on 1st February 2020.

 

The new Nigerian VAT was increased from 5 percent to 7.5 percent, representing an increase of 50 percent. Telecom subscribers in Nigeria have thus started paying more for calls and data services since the implementation of the new tariff.

 

It will be wise to consider alternatives to the traditional means of messaging and calling. Here are several apps that can help you cut cost of connecting with friends and family in the wake of Nigeria VAT hike.

WhatsApp

Whatsapp to stop working
WhatsApp is the fourth most downloaded app of the decade   Photo: Getty Images

 

This is a free, cross-platform messaging and Voice over IP service owned by Facebook. It is the world’s most popular messaging platform with over 1.5 billion users. Users can send text messages and voice messages, make voice and video calls, and share images, documents, user locations, and other media using the app.

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Line

phone calls text messaging
The Line app can take up to 200 people for video or audio group calls

 

Line is a freeware app for instant communications on electronic devices like smartphones and computers. Its users exchange texts, images, video, and audio, and conduct free VoIP conversations and video conferences. The app allows up to 200 people in a group to call at the same time.

Skype

phone calls text messaging
Photo: Skype.

 

Skype specialises in providing video chat and voice calls between computers, tablets, mobile devices, Xbox One console, and smartwatches via the Internet. The app provides instant messaging services as well. It allows messaging, video, audio, and images. Skype supports video conference calls between more than two people as well.

Telegram

 

phone calls text messaging
Telegram is a free cloud-based instant messaging and voice over IP service.

 

Its users can send messages and exchange photos, videos, stickers, audio and files of any type. Unlike WhatsApp, you do not need to have your phone with you to log into the platform with your phone to use the web version of Telegram.

 

According to a study, Telegram also consumes just about half the data WhatsApp consumes. To prove this, the research team compared the different instant messaging apps by sending the same amount of messages and measuring data consumption in one hour.  WhatsApp allows groups of only 256 people as a maximum, Telegram groups can have up to 5,000 participants.

 

With Telegram, users can create secret chats that are destroyed by themselves. In addition, the app also alerts you if someone takes a screenshot of the conversation.

Facebook Messenger

phone calls text messaging
Facebook Messenger evolved from Facebook chat

 

The app was originally developed as Facebook Chat until 2010 when it became a standalone app for iOS and Android. Messenger app had about 1.5billion users as of 2017.

 

Other apps are also available in Nigeria that can help reduce their call costs after the recent VAT increase include; Zoom, Viber, Imo, Skype among others

 

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