Signal rolls out in-app sustainer option to accept donations from users

By Shilpa Annie Joseph, Desk Reporter
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US-based cross-platform encrypted messaging service platform Signal has introduced a new feature that allows users to make donations within the app.

According to the company’s blog post, “As a nonprofit, Signal does not receive financial support from any advertisers or shareholders, and relies on users for donations.”

Users can donate on a monthly or one-time basis using Apple Pay or Google Pay within the app, and their payment information will not be linked to their Signal account. The company will use the same anonymous credential scheme it uses for private Signal groups.

“Clients make payments and then associate a badge to their profile such that the server can authenticate the client is in the set of people who made a payment but doesn’t know specifically which payment it corresponds to,” the company noted.

Users can donate to Signal at three different sustainer levels, each with its own badge, for $5, $10, or $20. “Sustainer subscriptions will only renew if a customer uses Signal during the course of a month; if you uninstall or stop using the app, the payments will be canceled before the next cycle to eliminate the ‘dark pattern’ of subscriptions you’ve forgotten about,” the company said.

As per the blog post, “In addition to sustaining Signal, you can now also give Signal a boost any time: if a new feature makes you smile, if Signal makes your day a little better, or if you just want to give Signal a virtual high five. It’s a quick one-time way to say thanks, and comes with its own boost badge.” Further, Signal is planning to add support for additional payment methods in the future.

Related: WhatsApp reportedly working to add ‘Undo’ button to quickly delete status


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