Mobile messaging

WhatsApp launches desktop version – but Apple users will have to wait

PUBLISHED : Thursday, 22 January, 2015, 4:06pm
UPDATED : Tuesday, 21 April, 2015, 11:14am

Messaging app WhatsApp Messenger today launched its desktop version, allowing millions of personal computer users to text, share images and send video clips just as they do on their smartphones.

But Apple users were left out, at least for now, as developers of the app experienced limitations with the iOS platform.

The desktop version is accessible only to users holding Android, Windows Phone, or Blackberry smartphones, and users must also use the Google Chrome browser to launch a conversation box on their PC’s screen.

It does not yet support other browsers such as Microsoft’s Internet Explorer, Apple’s Safari, or Mozilla Firefox.

The web-based version requires WhatsApp users to update the app on their smartphone to the latest version and do a few clicks to pair it with a PC.

Once they are connected, all communications on the devices – including text, pictures, sound clips and videos – will be synchronised.

WhatsApp is one of the most popular instant messaging apps globally. It claims to have 700 million monthly active users sending more than 30 billion messages every day.

Its launch of a web-based version follows similar moves in recent years by major rivals including WeChat, developed by mainland web giant Tencent, and Line from NHN Japan, the Japanese subsidiary of South Korea’s Naver Corporation.