Amazon has reportedly started surveying users about a new messaging service called Anytime, which offers the same functionality as WhatsApp but with added extras like the ability to order food in a group chat, split bills, and make video calls with masks and filters.
According to Amazon-focused site AFTVNews, Amazon has been asking its users about the most important features for its messaging app.
It isn’t clear what stage of development Anytime might be at.
According to consumer images provided to AFTVNews, The online retail giant is promising some end-to-end encryption, the ability to work on desktop or mobile, and a way to add friends using just their name rather than phone numbers.
If Amazon does launch a messaging app, it would be the first time the company delves properly into the social messaging space.
The company does own video streaming site Twitch, but has largely stayed away from competing directly with Facebook, Twitter, Snapchat, and Instagram. It launched enterprise messaging service Chime in February, and enabled voice calls on Alexa devices in May.
Anytime sounds like it could be a messaging service and social network rolled into one. It isn’t clear how it might be tied to your Amazon shopping profile, if at all. It also isn’t clear how prominent the Amazon branding would be — Twitch noticeably doesn’t feature Amazon’s name or colours on its site.