WhatsApp to stop running on millions of smartphones

Find out if your phone is on the messaging platform's blacklist.

Meryl D'Souza December 5, 2016

Before we head into the New Year, millions of people will have to ditch their smartphones and buy new devices if they want to continue using WhatsApp Messenger. 

In a blog entry earlier this year, the messaging platform said that it would have to cut off support to certain devices because “they don’t offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app’s features in the future.” 

Here are the phones that will be affected: 

Users with an iPhone 3GS or any other iPhone that was released before the year 2009 should consider investing in a new one. Additionally, WhatsApp will cut off support for devices running iOS 6 or prior software. This is more of a lifeline for users with an iPhone 4, 4S or later. Though why these people haven't already updated to the stellar iOS 10 or just bought the new iPhone 7 is beyond us.

Android devices running Android 2.1 or 2.2 will be blacklisted by the end of the year. For those of you who prefer not updating your phones, this blacklist bracket includes devices bought between 2010 and 2011.

Windows Phone
We can’t imagine there are people out there who still insist on using those awful Windows Phones released around 2010 – even Microsoft stopped supporting those things – but if you’re one of them, it’s time to buy a new one.

BlackBerry and Nokia
We really can’t say why, but WhatsApp has extended support for BlackBerry OS, BlackBerry 10, Nokia S40 and Nokia Symbian S60 devices until June 30, 2017.

So if you’ve been holding off on buying a better smartphone just because the one you’ve had since 2010 is good enough, the time has come for you to spend all that money you’ve saved up. 

Speaking about the drastic change the blog post, which was published around the Facebook-owned company’s seventh anniversary, said: "When we started WhatsApp in 2009, people's use of mobile devices looked very different from today. The Apple App Store was only a few months old. About 70 per cent of smartphones sold at the time had operating systems offered by BlackBerry and Nokia. Mobile operating systems offered by Google, Apple and Microsoft – which account for 99.5 per cent of sales today – were on less than 25 per cent of mobile devices sold at the time.”