Are you a WhatsApp power user on iOS? You’re getting a gift from the mobile messenger today. You can now put down your phone and take your conversation to the web client.
It took eight months, but iOS is joining the ranks of Android, Windows Phone and Blackberry with support for the browser-based client. Jan Koum, WhatsApp founder, talked about the web client when it first released.
“Our Web client is simply an extension of your phone: the Web browser mirrors conversations and messages from your mobile device — this means all of your messages still live on your phone.”
Of course, it wasn’t on every platform. iOS was noticeably absent. At the time, WhatsApp blamed Apple platform limitations for the client’s lack of support.
I’m guessing those limitations have been worked out, and support will be gradually rolling out with the latest WhatsApp update. Checking my phone, the update hasn’t made it to my phone.
When it does, syncing up your phone with the web client is pretty simple. Open web.whatsapp.com. Scan the QR code that appears and you’re good to go. Text away in your browser.
One caveat is that your phone will need to stay connected to the Internet for the web client to work in the browser. Why would anyone turn off their phone after syncing the messenger? Who knows, but keep it on.
After being acquired by Facebook for $19 billion in 2012, the messaging service has seen its user rolls top 800 million active monthly users. The data is from April, so it stands to reason it’s still topping that number.
Asia has been tough for the company. It still lags behind WeChat and Kakao in China and South Korea. Line continues to top WhatsApp in Japan, Taiwan and Thailand.
In response, the company has been rolling out more features to keep growth from stagnating. In April, it unveiled WhatsApp voice to counter rivals and take on telecoms.
Expect the update to hit soon. If you have auto updates turned on, you may want to glance over at the site to see when it goes live for you.