What is Kik Messenger?

Kik Messenger is a totally free instant messaging app for Android and iOS mobile devices. Kik Interactive Incorporated is the Canadian company which created the application and released it on October 19th, 2010. The app is primarily used to communicate with friends individually or in groups. There are no fees or restrictions on the number of times you can send and receive messages. The only restriction is for users to have Kik accounts.

Aside from allowing users to transmit text content between one another, the Kik instant messaging app also allows users to transmit photographs, sketches, videos, and webpages as well. The app does not use SMS credits through your phone carrier because it connects to the internet to transmit the content. So, if you are not connected to Wi-Fi, then your wireless data plan will be impacted by using the app.

The primary user demographic of the Kik Messenger app is teenagers and pre-teens. In the United States alone, teenagers make up 40% of the users on Kik. There are also many other teenagers throughout the world using the app as well. The international popularity of Kik has grown the app to have more than 300 million users who are registered. That is quite the accomplishment.

To preserve the safety and privacy of its users, Kik keeps everyone’s identities anonymous. When you register for an account, you don’t have to provide any personal information like an address or phone number. Instead, a username, password, and email address will do just fine for the registration.

However, the IP addresses of the users are recorded each time they log into the app. The IP addresses are not revealed to other users, but they are used by the company to find out where you’re located. If you happen to know the phone number of another user, you can enter that number to find their Kik profile if they have one.

Kik became popular because it was a great alternative to SMS text messaging. Teenagers have a habit of text messaging for several hours per day, which costs their parents a lot of money when they go over the texting limit on their wireless plan. By substituting SMS text messaging with Kik text messaging, the text limit on the plan becomes irrelevant. Just make sure a stable Wi-Fi connection is available.


Kik Messenger was designed to be a free substitute for the traditional SMS text messaging on smartphones. For this reason, you’ll notice a lot of its features and functions are very similar. The one big difference is that you don’t send messages to a person’s phone number in order for them to receive it. You simply find their username on Kik and connect with their profile. Then you can send as many messages as you want for free.

Let’s go over the main features of the Kik Messenger app:

  • Group Chats: You can chat with multiple people together by selecting “Start a Group.” Then just add the people you want into the group.

  • Video Chat: Conduct a video chat live with your friends.

  • Image Sending: You can send all kinds of images and photographs, including sketches, GIF animations, emojis, videos, and so on.

  • Kik Code Scanning: If you have the Kik code of another user, you can add them to your friends’ list by scanning their code with your smartphone camera.

  • Typing Notification: When you’re chatting with another person, the app will tell you if the other user is typing something. That way, you’ll know if they’re still active on their phone or not.

  • Invite People: If another user signs up on Kik Messenger and their phone number or email address is currently saved in your address book, then you’ll both receive a notification to add each other as friends on Kik.

  • Notifications: You can set custom sounds to play as a notification for when someone sends you a message.

  • Bots: Don’t have anybody to chat with? You can chat with some of the Kik chatbots that are available. These bots can give you the news, fashion tips, or administer entertaining quizzes to you.


In 2009, Canadian students attending the University of Waterloo were interested in creating apps for mobile smartphones. They formed their own company called Kik Interactive and named their first app, Kik Messenger, after the company name. The initial release of the app took place on October 19th, 2010. About 2 weeks after the initial release date, roughly 1 million people had already registered for accounts on the Kik Messenger app. Most of its popularity can be attributed to Twitter.

Since Kik Messenger is freeware, the company makes money through in-app purchases. There are no annoying ads that pop-up or anything like that. You can choose to purchase stickers, emojis, and smileys by going to the interface of the app. However, most of the company’s money comes from outside investors and venture capitalists.

Some of their investors included SV Angel, Millennium Technology Value Partners, and Valiant Capital Partners. In November of 2014, after raising $70.5 million, Kik acquired GIF Messenger Relay for $38.3 million. About 9 months later, a major Chinese internet company named Tencent invested $50 million into Kik Interactive. Now they were valued at $1 billion as a company. By this point, Kik CEO Ted Livingston wanted to change the direction of the app by focusing more on younger users.

In 2017, digital tokens for their new cryptocurrency “Kin” were offered on the Ethereum blockchain. Kik raised upwards of $100 million from just their initial coin offering alone. This led to the downfall of the Kik Messenger app. The SEC sued Kik after they failed to register the Kin tokens as securities with their government agency. Kik fought back and said it was unnecessary because of Kin’s decentralized nature.

To keep fighting back against the SEC’s lawsuit, Kik ultimately decided to end their Kik Messenger app. As of October 19th, 2019, it will no longer be available in any of the app stores. Kik’s sole focus is to preserve Kin and keep it away from the SEC so that it can remain decentralized.


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