Hike Messenger has announced the launch of a new feature called Hike ID, which masks your phone number for safeguarding privacy. The feature will be first rolled out to Android users within the next week, followed by iOS users at a later stage.
Hike ID is reminiscent of chatroom ID from yesteryears when you could chat with others without having to share your personal phone number. If you are a Hike Messenger user and do not want to share your phone number with someone but still want to chat, you could do so by sharing your Hike ID instead.
The feature is also said to make it easier for you to look up for contacts. You can search for the Hike ID and easily add them to group conversations. You also no longer need to separately save a person’s number to chat with them, you can simply search for their Hike ID and immediately start chatting.
Such phone number masking feature has been available on BBM and Telegram as well, which do away with the need to share the phone number by using a secondary ID instead. While the BBM service used a PIN as a unique identifier for users to connect to each other, Telegram users can share usernames to chat with people who do not have their phone numbers.
According to Hike, in a survey of over 1 million users, 69 percent respondents said that they’d like to talk to people without sharing their phone numbers first, and over 72 percent said that they want to skip the hassle of saving someone’s number before talking to them. These results prompted the service to come up with Hike ID as the solution, which makes it convenient as well secure for users to chat with people without having to share or save their phone numbers.
Prathik Shah, VP Product at Hike, said, “Hike ID will soon be integrated across all services on Hike for facilitating easy discovery. Everything will have a Hike ID – whether it’s people, groups or services. Hike ID will pave the way for brands to come on-board Hike soon.”