One of the biggest headaches that users of WhatsApp feel is when they switch between Android and iOS because of the app’s inability to transfer their WhatsApp chats between the two different ecosystems. But now, after what seems like a lifetime of suffering through this particular issue, WhatsApp has officially rolled out proudly that it will easily allow users to transfer their chats between Android and iOS from now on. Rumored for quite a few weeks, for now, WhatsApp finally enabled message history and content to be transferred between Android and iOS, which includes all photos, conversations, as well as voice notes. This new Earth-shaking feature was announced at an event conducted for Samsung’s phone launch today and will initially cover transfers from iOS to the company’s new Z Fold 3 and Z Flip 3 as well as some other future Samsung phones, releasing soon.
Afterward, WhatsApp will soon make this feature that allows all data transfer between iOS and Android phones to all the other devices too, though it’s unclear when. Maybe it doesn’t seem like WhatsApp is not making this issue important enough, but truth is, WhatsApp is giving a lot of priority to this feature, which will ultimately allow usage of your WhatsApp account on multiple devices, all at the same time. Why this development is taking so much time is because it requires rewriting a lot of things to make your account compatible with multi-device usage as it will modify your experience on WhatsApp to a great extent. Good things take time right. The chat transfer feature will first arrive on Android devices, mainly Samsung smartphones, so users who switch to iOS from Samsung can easily transfer chats and vice-versa.
The Samsung Galaxy Z Fold3 and Z Flip3 will be the first to host this feature and will cover data transfers from iOS devices to the newly launched phones. This new feature will tackle one of WhatsApp’s most annoying issues, which obviously is the inability to transfer your WhatsApp chat history between mobile operating systems, or between Android and iOS. If you choose to use WhatsApp’s cloud backup feature, then iOS chat histories are stored in iCloud, while Android’s are in Google Drive. So it is only possible to transfer your chat data between phones that use the same operating system. The feature will also allow WhatsApp Web to be used without an Internet connection on your device, at first, and in the coming updates, WhatsApp will allow linking other iOS and Android mobile devices.
But the company still doesn’t allow linking an Android device when you’re using an iOS device. Although the web does offer some tools that can allow the chat history transfer, they are not much reliable and WhatsApp’s modified versions don’t even allow these tools to operate as they violate the Terms of Service. Engadget was the first to report that WhatsApp announced the chat transfer feature in airtime during Samsung’s Galaxy Unpacked event. The company has been testing and re-testing this feature for many weeks now and told us that it wasn’t easy to implement due to “end-to-end encryption,” requiring added assistance to make it work. The data migration between devices will cover not only chats but photos, voice notes, videos, and all conversations, and will be available to Samsung users in the “coming weeks.”
Though the company hasn’t said anything as to when the feature will arrive for a wider range of WhatsApp devices and on iOS. The chat transfer will take place only when both the iOS and Android devices are physically connected via USB-C to Lightning cable (the one conveniently included with all modern iPhones). Internet won’t be able to transfer your data across devices. If your data is backed up by more than one cloud backup of your chat history, images, and voice messages, then the backups won’t be merged, instead, the data transferred will overwrite the existing backup once a new backup is performed. As WhatsApp allows your chat history migration from WhatsApp for iOS to WhatsApp for Android, it is pretty obvious that it will also allow the vice-versa.
When the user tries to link a device having a different operating system to his WhatsApp account, it’s always needed to update to the latest WhatsApp update available on the App Store or TestFlight, in order to avoid any compatibility error with the Android version. But sadly, the release date is not available till now, but we think it will be in the near future. WhatsApp has climbed the ladder since its inception a decade ago to become the most popular app for messaging all across the world. But since it was born, the company has limited the messaging app to a single instance on a single device. For switching devices, it is necessary for users to perform a backup to local storage so that chats, messages, images, voice memos, etc are not lost when shifting to the new device; but it was never possible before to transfer data between operating systems.
Though WhatsApp has declined to comment anything about the launch of this feature on non-Samsung Android phones or when it’ll allow Android to iOS transfers. “Your WhatsApp messages belong to you. That’s why they are stored on your phone by default, and not accessible in the cloud-like many other messaging services. We’re excited for the first time to make it easy for people to securely transfer their WhatsApp history from one operating system to another. This has been one of our most requested features from users for years and we worked together with operating systems and device manufacturers to solve it,” Sandeep Paruchuri, product manager at WhatsApp told the media. The chat migration feature’s announcement coincides with Samsung’s launch of its two new phones.
This clear strategy implies to rope in iPhone users with foldable phones. It cannot be a coincidence that WhatsApp chose to roll out its feature that will allow a seamless chat history transfer from Android to iOS in the Samsung launch event. And now, it seems WhatsApp is already set to test another feature as WABetaInfo, the Twitter account that keeps track of new changes in WhatsApp has been reported. Apparently, this still-in-testing feature will allow the messaging app’s users to view status updates of their contacts via their profile pictures. According to the Twitter account, the feature requires a lot of development as of now and was spotted in the code of the latest Android beta version 22.214.171.124 of the app. Until now, you had to go to another tab to view the status updates of your contacts.
But when this new feature rolls out, WhatsApp users can just tap on their contacts’ display picture and view their status updates. Apparently, when you’ll click on that profile picture, an option box will pop up asking you to choose to watch either the status update or the profile picture. You can choose the status update option to see your contact’s status in this way. Though there is no news as to when this new feature will roll out to the app’s users.