WhatsApp Drops Support for Older Phones

You'll need to upgrade iOS or Android to keep using the app

What: WhatsApp, the popular encrypted chat app owned by Facebook, is ending support for smartphones running older OS software.

How: WhatsApp only supports iPhones running iOS 9 or later and Android smartphones running version 4.0.3 or later.

Why Do You Care: If you're still relying on an older phone, you'll need to upgrade it or its OS to match the current supported specs to continue using WhatsApp.

WhatsApp logo on a field of green and a silhouette of a hand holding a phone in the background
Getty Images

As of February 1, 2020, WhatsApp will only support iPhones running iOS 9 or later, Android phones running Android 4.0.3 or later, and "select phones running KaiOS 2.5.1+, including JioPhone, and JioPhone 2."

WhatsApp's support page says phones running older systems have been able to use the popular chat app until that date, implying the app will no longer work on these older mobile operating systems.

While Apple doesn't typically release numbers on how many current phones are running which specific iOS versions, iOS developer David Smith reports that zero percent of his app users still run iOS 8. The adoption rate of new iOS versions is typically fairly high; Digital Trends reports that 88 percent of iOS users were updated to iOS 12 a year after its release.

Google does share specific numbers, however, on its distribution dashboard. Only 0.3 percent of Android devices are currently using Android Gingerbread (2.3.3 - 2.3.7). That may seem like a small amount, but it works out to about 75 million people using the older OS globally.

If that number includes you, and you want to keep using WhatsApp, you'll need to update your device to a later OS, or upgrade the device itself if it's upgraded as far as the hardware will allow.

Via: Digital Trends

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