National exam | Arts Stream | Catch-up Session 2018

National exam | Arts Stream | Catch-up Session 2018

The exam’s Comprehension Text

       [1] WhatsApp is now the most used messaging application, especially among teenagers, surpassing Facebook, Skype and others. Nearly one billion people use WhatsApp nowadays.

       [2] Teens are flocking to WhatsApp because it gives them the privacy and freedom to exchange any messages they want with whoever they want. “On WhatsApp, I usually feel that I am not being judged, particularly because there isn’t any eye contact or physical contact, only words and signs. So, I feel more intimacy and security. I expose myself more, but it isn’t embarrassing, maybe because I don’t see people’s physical reactions,” says Emily, a teenager from the USA.

       [3] Jan Koum and Brian Acton are the founders of WhatsApp. Jan was not from a wealthy family. He stayed with his mother and grandmother in a small apartment. With his hard work, he finally got into San Jose State University where he took training in programming.

       [4] Jan met his business partner Brian while he was working at Yahoo as an engineer. They worked together in Yahoo for almost nine years and then left the company together. Then they applied to Facebook, but they were not lucky. They had no plans to become rich until they thought of making an application for iPhone users.

       [5] As the initial models failed, Jan was discouraged and was almost about to give up when Brian persuaded him to keep at it. They then created the app which received tremendous success in a very less time. This was because the users found it pretty easy to use and they do not need to register anywhere in order to use the application. After months of beta testing, WhatsApp was, finally, launched in the app store for iPhones in November, 2009. Jan chose the name WhatsApp because it sounded similar to the daily phrase, “What’s up”. This was the dream come true for both partners.

       [6] Jan and Brian earned millions of dollars without any advertising on the application. They made money in two ways. They started charging iPhone users on first time installation and the Android users every year. A lot of people used the app and paid both of them. Reports state that around 250 million people use WhatsApp in a month. This is a huge number for any application to reach in the smartphone space.

       [7] WhatsApp became popular in just a short amount of time, and this caught Facebook’s attention. After several months of venture capital financing, Facebook declared that they were acquiring WhatsApp in February 2014. The deal went down for US $19 Billion. It was Facebook’s largest acquisition till then.

Adapted from: and


National exam | Arts Stream | Catch-up Session 2018 with Answers



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