New Delhi: Homegrown instant messaging app Hike Messenger, later known as Hike Sticker Chat, has been officially shut down. The company's chief executive officer Kavin Bharti Mittal announced the shutdown of its operations recently. Kavin Mittal is the son of India's second largest telco Bharti Airtel's founder and chairman Sunil Mittal. The app has been removed from Play Store and Apple's App store. Hike Messenger App Shuts Down! People Bid Emotional Farewell to Sticker Chat Application, Check Tweets and Memes.

"Today we are announcing that we will be sunsetting StickerChat in Jan'21. We thank you all for giving us your trust. We wouldn't be here without you. All your data will be available to download in the app," Mittal tweeted.

Users can download their data inside the application. However, the announcement does not mean an end to other apps in development by the company. The end of Hike's messenger service comes at a time when Signal and Telegram have added tens of millions of users in recent weeks.

Launched in December 2012, Hike was once regarded as a competition to global messaging platforms such as WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger and Viber. Hike has so far raised over $260 million from investors, including Chinese internet giant Tencent Holdings, manufacturing firm Foxconn Technology Group and the Bharti group.

(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Jan 19, 2021 10:50 AM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website