|Developer(s)||Naver Japan/NHN Corp/LINE Corporation|
|Operating system||iOS, Android, Windows Phone, BlackBerry, Microsoft Windows, Mac OS X|
|Available in||English, Japanese, Chinese, Indonesian, Korean, Malay, Thai, Turkish, Vietnamese, Spanish|
|Type||Instant Messaging Client|
Line (usually stylized in all-caps as LINE) is a proprietary instant messaging application for smartphones and PCs. In addition to basic messaging, Line users can send each other images, video, audio media messages and make free VoIP calls.
Initially a mobile application for Android and iOS phones, it has since expanded to Windows Phoneas well as desktop computers. A BlackBerry version was released in October 2012 and a Nokia Asha version in Asia and Oceania at the end of March 2013.
Line was launched on June 23, 2011 by NHN Japan after the Tōhoku earthquake. NHN Japan realized how inconvenient the damaged communication system was and discovered that a data service would work and be more efficient. They decided to design an app accessible on smartphones, tablets, and desktops that would work on the data network and provide a continuous and free instant messaging and calling service. The name Line was originated from the fact that after the incident people had to line up outside of public phones, because in Japan the public phones "are programmed to take priority over networks during and after an earthquake". Some versions of Line (e.g. the Android version in May 2013) are distributed by LINE Corporation.
In late October 2011, Line experienced an unexpected overload on the server due to the extreme growth of users around the world, causing outages and delays in message delivery. After concluding that the scalability process had to be improved, NHN Japan chose to adopt HBase as the primary storage for user profiles, contacts, and groups.
On July 3, 2012, NHN Japan announced the new features "Home" and "Timeline" for Line. The features allow users to share recent developments in life to friends in real-time, similar to social networking services.
On December 16, 2012 the Line application was shown in rap artist Big Sean's music video for his song 'Guap'
As of January 18, 2013, Line had reached 100 million users worldwide and reportedly was gaining about 400,000 users daily.
- Optional address book syncing
- Real-time confirmation when messages are sent and delivered
- Share photos, videos, music and more with people
- Send current or any specific location
- Send emoji, stickers and emoticons to friends
- Create and join groups where you can chat and share media
- Bulletin boards (up to 100 people at once) for groups
- Add friends through the use of QR code
- Add friends through NFC by shaking their phones
- Direct Pop-out message box for easier reading and replying
- New Timeline and Home page features on iOS and Android
- Windows and Mac users can access via the Desktop version, and smart-tablet users via the Browser version
One feature of Line is the Sticker Shop where users are able to purchase virtual stickers depicting original and well-known characters; besides there are many stickers that available for free download, depends on country availability. The stickers are used in chat between users and act as large sized emoji. Users are able to purchase stickers as gifts. Purchased stickers are attached to an account and can be used on other platforms. Stickers are only available for download to users on Android, iOS, and Windows Phone and are purchased through their respective mobile stores. New stickers are released weekly. Some stickers are released only for a limited time and are usually in commemoration of events (e.g. the 2012 Summer Olympics).
- Single-device only. It is not possible to use the same Line account on multiple devices, e.g. a tablet and a phone. The only exception is that it is possible to use the same account on the PC version as well as on one additional device.
Naver has released a number of applications that are compatible with Line.
Provides users with the ability to decorate your photos. The photo database ranges over 700 Line stickers and over 100 frames. These pictures can also be shared on platforms such as Twitter and Facebook. Available both on iPhone and Android for free. Comparable to Instagram.
Allows users to send and share cards for celebrations such as Birthdays and anniversaries. It also allows the user to add a personal message. Available both on iOS and Android for free.
Line brush is a painter App which allows users to edit their pictures with 27 style brushes, 15 photo brushes and adjust the finest details. It's initially available on the iOS system., and later for Android devices.