READ: WhatsApp changes 'online' in 2019 and annoys users; remember
However, the measure has the potential to impact millions of people who have very old smartphones or who have never had the software updated. Below, understand what changes for those who have Android, iPhone (iOS) or Windows Phone and what to do to avoid losing access to the most popular chat in the world in 2020.
Will WhatsApp stop working? Seven facts about the end of app support on some phones Photo: Paulo Alves / dnetc
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1. WhatsApp will stop working in 2020 on some phones
The end of support means the termination of WhatsApp activities for a given operating system. The app cannot be automatically removed from a phone that is no longer supported, but certain features may stop operating at any time. In addition, the app no longer has updates, which makes it increasingly insecure, as it does not receive patches for vulnerabilities discovered frequently.
The application currently supports Android 4.0.3 Ice Cream Sandwich or newer versions, and iOS 9 or newer. The messenger also continues to operate on KaiOS 2.5.1 or higher, a simple system that has succeeded FirefoxOS which is still used in basic mobile phones in India. No version of Windows Phone or Windows 10 Mobile more supported by WhatsApp.
2. Android 2.3.7 Gingerbread is no longer supported
On Android, WhatsApp terminates support for version 2.3.7 (Gingerbread) and older, which includes cell phones of any brand manufactured in 2011 or previous years, as well as models from that date that still leave the factory with Android 2.3 and have never been updated to version 4.0. The Galaxy S, from 2010, among other smartphones manufactured until mid-2011 and 2012, enters the account. According to Google, there are currently 0.3% of users of the system in these versions. The number is equivalent to about 7.5 million people.
Galaxy S, 2010, one of the phones on which WhatsApp will stop working in 2020 Photo: Divulgao / Google
3. iPhone with iOS 8 in the most use WhatsApp
On iOS, the application will stop working on all iPhones running iOS 8 or earlier versions. The measure impacts all models that cannot upgrade to iOS 9: iPhone 4, iPhone 3GS and older.
According to Apple, there are currently 7% of users on iOS 11 or older, equivalent to about 63 million of the total of about 900 million active iPhones in the world. The number, therefore, is probably much lower when considering only those who still use iOS 8 and other more lagged versions. The exact amount is not disclosed, so it is not possible to specify how many iPhone users will be impacted.
4. WhatsApp has stopped working on Windows Phone since January 1
Since December 31, 2019, WhatsApp no longer works on any Windows Phone. The change applies to any Nokia device, Samsung and other manufacturers that have marketed products with the Microsoft system in the past. Since mid-2019, the app could no longer be downloaded from the official store. As of January 1, 2020, the messenger actually prevents the user from sending messages.
No longer possible to use WhatsApp on Windows Phone Photo: Luciana Maline / dnetc
5. Users with Android and old iOS have until February 1st to update or migrate
Since now, it is no longer possible to download the application or reactivate an existing account on a cell phone running Android 2.37 or lower, or on an iPhone with iOS 8 or older. Anyone who already has the application installed on one of these devices will be able to continue using it until February 1, 2020, but WhatsApp no longer guarantees that its functions will continue to operate normally until then. From the next month, the messenger will only work from Android 4 and iOS 9.
6. WhatsApp does not warn you: find out the version of your cell phone system
To find out the version of the system on Android, you need to access the settings, go to the "About phone" menu (the name may change depending on the cell phone) and look for the information written in the item "Android version". On Samsung cell phones, I need to tap on the "Software information" option to access the data.
Discover the Android version in the "About the Phone" menu Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
On iOS, just open the Settings app and go to the "General> About" menu and check the information in the "Software version" item.
Discover the iOS version in the "General" menu of the iPhone Photo: Reproduo / Paulo Alves
7. I need to update or change my phone to continue using WhatsApp
Users who have had an Android phone launched for about seven years should not have to worry about ending support for WhatsApp. The Galaxy S3 of 2013, for example, has already left the factory with Android 4.0.3 and can still run the application. The iPhone 6S or iPhone SE, or iPhone 6, iPhone 5S, iPhone 5, iPhone 5C or iPhone 4S are also safe, as long as they have been updated at least to iOS 9.
If you have one of these smartphones, but never got to update, now is the time to get a more current version of the system to continue exchanging messages with friends. The procedures for updating Android and downloading a new system on the iPhone are simple and require only an active Wi-Fi connection and some battery charge.
If you have a phone with Android 2.3 that does not update more or an iPhone 4 or older, there is no alternative: you just have to change phones to continue using WhatsApp. Backup Android to Google Drive or iPhone to iCloud to recover your conversations on your new phone.
The biggest problem is for Windows Phone users. To continue using WhatsApp, you need to migrate to iPhone or Android, which means losing your conversations, as it is not possible to recover backup from one system to the other. The application only allows you to send individual chats by email. To export, open the desired conversation, tap the "More" button and go to the "Data (or Group Data)> Send history by e-mail" menu.
Via Whatsapp (1, 2 and 3), Google, Apple and Statista
How to update WhatsApp on iPhone