When comparing Wickr vs Signal Private Messenger, the Slant community recommends Signal Private Messenger for most people. In the question“What are the best cross-platform & encrypted messaging apps?” Signal Private Messenger is ranked 4th while Wickr is ranked 5th. The most important reason people chose Signal Private Messenger is:
Backed by people nut about privacy, including - Edward Snowden, Whistleblower and privacy advocate - Laura Poitras, Oscar winning filmmaker and journalist - Bruce Schneier, internationally renowned security technologist - Matt Green, Cryptographer, Johns Hopkins University
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Can find other users securely
Instead of using usernames, emails or phone numbers to find other users, Wickr uses hashes derived from phone numbers or email addresses (this applies to the find friends functionality only). Hashes are the result of a one-way cryptographic function, meaning it's purposefully difficult to reconstruct original data (phone numbers and email addresses in this case) from them. For Wickr, hashes are generated on the client's side so that no personal information is ever sent to the Wickr servers. The app finds people on your contact list that also use Wickr by comparing the hashes that get generated from contacts and comparing them to the hashes that are stored on Wickr servers.
Pro Messages have user-defined lifespan
Messages can have a lifespan between 3 seconds and 6 days. Received messages arrive locked. Once they are opened by the recipient, a timer starts counting down until the message is deleted. Of course, the recipient can still copy them or take a screenshot.
Pro Content shredder
Wickr has a feature that not only erases all messages, but also overwrites them with junk data.
Pro By default, doesn't allow taking screenshots
Wickr disables the screenshot functionality altogether when the app is open. However, there are ways to circumvent this, as if the user has a rooted phone and has installed apps to overide this block or if a screenshot is taken via some apps that project the screen to a PC.
Pro Group messaging
Pro Includes a basic photo editor
The editor allows cropping images, drawing and writing text on them as well as add decorations.
Pro Doesn't require a phone number
Unlike most, you can use your phone but you don't have to. You can register without giving anything and add contacts either via e-mail (only) or phone number.
Pro Truly open and secure, comes from the Open Whisper Systems Team
Backed by people nut about privacy, including
- Edward Snowden, Whistleblower and privacy advocate
- Laura Poitras, Oscar winning filmmaker and journalist
- Bruce Schneier, internationally renowned security technologist
- Matt Green, Cryptographer, Johns Hopkins University
Pro Encrypted voice calling
Unlike many other apps, signal provides not only text messaging but also live encrypted voice calling.
Pro Free as in both free beer and freedom, not as in "The customer is the product"
Pay Nothing - The development team is supported by community donations and grants. There are no advertisements, and it doesn't cost anything to use.
Con Small user base
Wickr claims that one million users have downloaded the app with no information on how many active users they have. But even if every person that has downloaded the app is an active user, the userbase is really small compared to apps like WhatsApp that boast about hundreds of millions of active users.
Con Centralized architecture
Signal's server architecture has been partially decentralized since December 2013, when it was announced that the messaging protocol that is used in Signal had successfully been integrated into the Android-based open-source operating system CyanogenMod. As of CyanogenMod 11.0, the client logic is contained in a system app called WhisperPush. According to Open Whisper Systems, "the Cyanogen team runs their own Signal messaging server for WhisperPush clients, which federates with Open Whisper Systems' Signal server, so that both clients can exchange messages with each-other seamlessly".
The WhisperPush source code is available under the GPLv3 license. In January 2016, however, the CyanogenMod team announced that they will be discontinuing WhisperPush on February 1, and recommended that its users switch to Signal. After this, Signal's server architecture will be entirely centralized.
Con Requires phone number to register
Con Code being used in Whatsapp and other parties undermines trust
It's unlikely FB would add encryption it does not have access to.