The Meow Chat has blown up over the last day or so, with thousands of users getting Facebook invites from friends and others.
That’s prompted questions about whether the app is safe or not and what it’s generally about.
The app is from a privately held company based in New York City. It’s available on Android and iOS/iPhone platforms.
It’s primarily advertised as a way to get matched with strangers both nearby and around the world with “a random 1-on-1 or group chat.”
“Set out to explore the world or fly to a random country. There are interesting people to chat with all over the world,” its description says.
The Daily Mirror clarifies that the app is like a cross between an instant messaging app like WhatsApp and a dating app.
“It lets you swap text and picture messages with friends, or hook up with random people. And as the name suggests, there are a lot of pictures of cats,” it said.
The app has actually been around for a few months but was relaunched recently with the random chat feature.
The reason for the loads of invites is because users are asked to connect the Meow account to their Facebook account, which if done gives the company access to users’ Facebook friends list.
It later asks users to invited friends to download the app.
Here’s how to to block invitations, according to The Week.
“On your Facebook home page, click ‘Games’ on the left. Then click ‘Requests’ and find your most recent Meow Chat request. Click on the X and you should see an option to ‘Block Meow Chat,'” it said.
“Click and confirm and you should be able to avoid further invitations.”
As for whether it’s safe to download, it appears that it is. The invitations are just annoying a lot of people and making them suspicious about the app.