Using WhatsApp on an old phone? Prepare to be booted off soon

Starting 2017, WhatsApp will not be working in a number of old smartphones following a new upgrade which may bring in several new features.

Millions of WhatsApp users may not be able to use WhatsApp on their phones from early next year.

WhatsApp is among the most popular apps in the world, used by over a billion users and offering a number of features to let users share links, images, videos and other files with each other apart from exchanging Emojis and messages. However, WhatsApp isn't without competitors and needs to change with the times to retain it's user base in the long run. As such, like all other apps, WhatsApp needs constant upgrading and some new features can no longer work in devices running older operating systems.

When it comes to smartphones, Lollipop beats KitKat, Marshmallow and Nougat

WhatsApp has just announced that the app will undergo an upgrade shortly, following which it will not run in a number of older smartphones since they will become incompatible. If you own any of these older devices (we have included a list of such phones below), you will either need to buy a new phone or check if your phone is upgraded to the latest operating system version. "While these mobile devices have been an important part of our story, they don't offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app's features in the future," said WhatsApp through a statement. "As we look ahead to our next seven years, we want to focus our efforts on the mobile platforms the vast majority of people use."

Last month, Google's Android distribution figures suggested that there are still millions of smartphones across the globe which are still running older versions of Android like  KitKat, Jelly Bean and Lollipop. The figures showed that Android 5.0 and 5.1 Lollipop operating systems, which are two years old, are present in 34% of all Android devices but more alarmingly, older operating systems like Android KitKat and Jelly Bean are still present in 25.2% and 13.7% of all Android devices. Android Ice Cream Sandwich and Gingerbread are present in 1.3% devices respectively while the ancient Android Froyo still powers 0.1% of all devices.

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Comparatively, Apple's iOS is much better off. Since Apple doesn't depend on OEMs to pass on new OS updates and fixes to all devices, in October, iOS 10 was present in 54% of all iOS devices while iOS 9 still covered 38% of the remaining, which meant that 92% of all iPhones had at least one of the two. So it naturally follows that while millions of Android phone users will suffer due to WhatsApp's upcoming upgrade, not many iPhone users will feel the heat.

Here's a list of affected phones which will not be compatible with the new version of WhatsApp once it launches:

iPhone 3GS and any iPhone running iOS 6.0 or earlier.
1st, 2nd, 3rd or 4th Gen iPads which haven't been updated.
Phones still running Android 2.1 or 2.2.
All Windows 7 phones which haven't been updated yet.
BlackBerry 10 phones will remain compatible till the summer of 2017.

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1Comment

  1. Guest
    Guest8th Dec 2016

    Lollipop killed my Nexus, re routed to jelly bean got my Nexus back.. Who can afford to keep up with changing hardware everytime theres a soft upgrad...

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