The social network of messaging apps.
I’ve used just three messaging apps on my Android phone, besides the default messaging platform: Go SMS Pro, to group message with iPhone users, WhatsApp, just to see what all the fuss was about, and Tango. Messaging apps are pretty cool since you have a chance to connect with your friends without using any data or going through your mobile provider. Since messaging apps are getting some quality exposure, it’s appropriate to review a few of the top contenders to see which ones are best.
Let’s take a look at my Android Tango app review to understand exactly how the app differentiates itself from other messaging apps and if we expect it to make moves in the market.
Our rating: 4.5 out of 5 stars
Google Play rating: 4 out of 5 stars
Loads of additional options besides messaging such as music suggestions, people finding, games. QR scanning and news. The support is top-notch and the interface is the best you can find for messaging apps.
You receive push notifications from people you’ve never met before. Some of the games are just links to download more apps or ads. The app tries to push people to use technologies that most people don’t use. Shake to share and QR code sharing are not all that popular.
The Bottom Line
Tango is more than a messaging app. It allows you to connect with other people in your area, similar to Tinder. Obviously it’s not a dating app like Tinder, but you have the chance to connect with others in your area who you know or don’t know. Tango gives you direct access to news and entertainment platforms so that you don’t have to exit the app to go to your browser to share cool stuff with your friends. Overall, it’s the best messaging app I’ve played around with, and if you want something different from the default messenger on Android then choose Tango. Just be aware that you give up lots of personal information, similar to Facebook.
Quick and Easy Setup – 10 out of 10
It’s quite simple on Tango to get setup. Either punch in your new user info or login with Facebook. I did the Facebook login and it took seconds to log me in and start recommending friends.
Expanding Your Network – 9 out of 10
Tango has a sleek page to help you expand your network and find people you might want to chat with. The People you may know function is handy, and the People in your area works like Tinder, which makes you wonder what Tango is trying to be in the market.Popular People is great for following famous folks, which is similar to how people use Twitter. Overall, this connection page is a hodge podge of features from different social networks. It’s nice for me, but I’m not sure the app is focusing on a single market. They seem to want to cover everything, which might hurt them in the long run.
One of the coolest things on Tango is that the app automatically scans your social networks to figure out who you might know and want to connect with. It’s similar to how Facebook gives you suggestions. I always appreciate finding new people who I haven’t connected with in a while.
Although this isn’t really a problem with Tango; the app includes a QR code scanner and share platform. I don’t exactly understand why Tango thinks that people actually share their information this way, but it’s included anyways.
If anything it just adds another tab to your app that you won’t ever use. I understand that lots of businesses are trying to utilize QR codes in magazines and such, but I can’t imagine ever sending a QR code to a friend so they can friend me on Tango. I would just tell them to type in my name.
An Interface Built for Messaging – 10 out of 10
During my Android Tango app review I realized that the messaging portion of Tango is where the app excels. The company clearly mastered how to make people feel comfortable in a messaging environment. You just click on the messaging tab and then you can send your friends a message. It’s easy to share music and other media.
My favorite part of the messaging interface is the swiping functionality. You swipe left and it shows all of your notifications in case someone sent you a message or mentioned you in one of their status updates. You can quickly respond to one of these notifications without leaving the sidebar that comes up when you want to message.
Swipe right to bring up all of your contacts in the Tango app. Simply type in a name and the Tango app directs you to the messaging screen for quick texting. This swiping functionality is perfect for looking at some news or listening to music and then sending someone a message. Videos and music stay behind the contacts while you search for who you want to send to.
Get Sold on Games – 5 out of 10
Imagine texting your buddy and then challenging her to a game while you text. This is one of the weak points of Tango. The cool part is that you can invite friends to your games and then try to crush them in a strategy or puzzle game. Afterwards you have a chance to share your results and then brag to your other friends.
The big problem I saw with this gaming feature is that the Tango company uses this as a way to promote other apps and games on the Google Play Store. Although some of the games are worth a download, I felt like I was constantly being sold to whenever I wanted to play a game with a friend. I understand they can’t create and manage all of their own games, but it’s annoying to see the Google Play Store pop up with every click.
Sharing Paradise – 8 out of 10
Although you receive lots of ads along the way, the sharing on Tango is pretty darn cool. On the screenshot below I scrolled through the Tango music selection and had a chance to listen to some cool songs.
Tango also lets you follow different news sources. Like I stated before, Tango tries to combine several apps and software options such as Facebook, Feedly, Spotify and more. Even though it’s a bit cluttered at times, the news area fits right in. There’s no reason to bring up Feedly and your messaging app at the same time, because you can do it all in Tango. Forget about Google News and just follow your favorite news sources in Tango. Then share with people when you find something worthwhile.
Ideal Customer Support – 10 out of 10
If a developer creates an app I expect them to provide some high quality support in the actual app. It’s not often where I navigate their website to checkout videos and other support content unless I really have a pressing question that a quick email or a forum search can solve. This is an area where Tango excels, because they offer a few information pages once you open the Tango app to give you an idea as to what you can expect.
I also enjoy that you receive an automatic message from the company that includes a nice welcome video to guide you through your first few messages and address items such as playing games, linking in messages and finding your friends.
If you stray away from the app you can also find some nice support information from the Tango team. The Tango website provides a blog for upcoming releases, a tips page to guide you through the app and a Contact Us page to ask any custom questions you might have. I sent the Tango team a quick email to ask them about the in-call games and they responded within about 24 hours, which is pretty quick in my opinion. From what I can see they don’t offer phone support, but not many apps do.
Tango offers a full knowledge base and support center for users to chat online about problems they are having with the app. It seems fairly active, but some of the topics didn’t have many responses, which tells me that sending a quick email to the Tango team might be your best bet.
App Permissions and Annoyances
Tango is trying to be a social network for messaging apps, and it shows in their app permissions. Facebook is notorious for taking information from its users, and Tango does the same exact thing. When you download Tango you give up access to your contacts, accounts and messages. It might also share your location and personal information.
There are also a few other annoyances. Although Tango doesn’t take up much battery or space on your phone it runs pretty much all of the time, unless you kill it. The notifications are obnoxious, because they mostly come from people you have never met before. Although the app is free and quite bug free, you give up lots when it comes to personal information. Your phone is safe in terms of security, but those who are protective of their Facebook info might stray away from Tango.
What are the Tango customers saying?
“Tango Rules Can reach family and friends in far away places for $FREE.99! Video chatting with my siblings, kids, and honey bunny rocks!”
“Good! So far works better then Skype. It does slow my phone down & freezes more with the upgrade. Like the older version much better!”
“Weird friend requests I keep getting friend requests from people with names that are in my phone book but its not them! Diff pics and when asked in real life they say they don’t have tango.”
“Love tango for video chat with family and friends although sound quality is a little disappointing at times but all in its a great app.”
“Need to improve Insane battery drain during usage, frequent crashes and overall very heavy app. It’s useful to meet people, no doubt about it, but serious improvements are needed by the developers.”
Tango is a wonderful messaging app, with problems such as personal info sharing and annoying promotions for other apps and games. If you need a messaging app then I would go with Tango, but the default Android messaging app is better for those who are protective of their information. It’s also weird that Tango tries to be so many things packed into one app. Let me know if you have any questions about my Android Tango app review in the comments sections below.