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Awareness, Education & Training
on CyberBullying Prevention

Wiper App – it’s not new, but we hadn’t heard of it before

At Beat The Cyberbully we try to stay abreast of the latest and greatest things happening in the digital world. Last week our core focus was on Meerkat – the new one touch live video streaming app. We even Meerkat’d our broadcast on Pearl FM in the studio on Thursday. The app had only been launched the week before and came to your attention for a couple of reasons. First thing – it was EVERYWHERE on social media especially as it was launched at SXSW (the birth place of Twitter) and it basically took over.

 

This week though we are talking about an app called Wiper – which whilst it was released in 2014, has not really been heard of since. However, it came to our attention last week as it was banned in China App stores as it had built in and launched it’s ability to handle BitCoin. But that’s a topic for another post.

Check out Wiper App

After reading about the BitCoin wallet we decided we should really check out this chat app which seems to be an amalgamation of SnapChat, Whatsapp and Wickr (another app we’ll be reviewing shortly as this was released earlier this year)

 

Wiper though presents itself as a chat app with added value. That added value is being able to make HD quality calls for free through the app, as well as watching video and listening to music. But where it differentiates itself from the others is the ability to, as luck with have it, wipe your conversations out, from your phone, from the other persons phone and from the Wiper servers as well. So in theory, no evidence whatsoever of that conversation ever taking place. Right??

 

Like SnapChat it has built in notification if someone screen shots the content of the conversation but there is on the same page, just further down, that sells the idea of being able to protect your chats a caveat stating that actually no one can fully protect your chats, because what if someone takes their second phone out and takes a photo of their screen? Can’t notify you about that can it!!??

We are still testing this App because in all honesty, it’s not that intuitive to use. I think I have started a conversation with Beat The Cyberbully’s UK founder Wayne Denner, but I am not 100% sure of this! When you log in you get taken straight to a ‘Chats’ page which at first seems to be where you would have all open chats, except they aren’t, except for the default robot chat you get from Wiper to get you used to it. And the open one I think I’m having with Wayne. We are currently using Whatsapp to establish whether or not we are having a Wiper conversation! How ridiculous is that!!!!??

 

Along with the chat menu, you have a contacts menu which has my entire address book in it. How this differs from my chats view I am not sure but I’m hopeful of figuring this out soon.

 

Whilst having probably no impact whatsoever, as I wasn’t asked to prove my age at any point. On the iTunes store there is a warning stating that you have to be over 17 years old to use the app. It’s a hyperlink that very kindly takes you to your locally situated iTunes program to a page explaining what App ratings mean. If I was under 17 and I was taken to this page, the explanation of what a 17+ app might contain would make me do whatever I possibly could to get my hands on the app! They might want to rethink that.

 

For those youngsters using the app, just be careful as you are never 100% safe, or anonymous online. For parents out there, keep an eye out for the Wiper App on your children’s smart devices. As always, if you see it, use it as a reason to start an open conversation.

You may think it strange that we are reviewing apps that are over a year old. But we are doing it to demonstrate that we are just human too. Yes we work in the field of digital day in, day out, but that doesn’t mean we know everything. Far from it in fact. We are learning every day, not only from our work online, but in many cases, from the children we are speaking to at our sessions. They serve to remind us, just how much work we have to do to get everyone onto the same page!