WhatsApp could be about to introduce a game-changing new feature for those of us with more than one phone.
According to reports published by WABetaInfo, which keeps a close eye on developments at the app, users may soon benefit from multi-device syncing.
At present, to migrate your WhatsApp chats, media and groups you need to back up and then restore when you swap to another device.
But this addition would keep both your phones in perfect lockstep if WhatsApp is your main form of communication.
Details of the feature have appeared in beta version 22.214.171.124, reports WABetaInfo.
It explains that syncronization will mean deleting a specific message in a group will delete it from both devices. Similarly, pinning or starring a message will make it visible on both phones too.
The feature will come from WhatsApp migrating chat history into the cloud – and therefore allowing it to be remotely accessed from different operating systems.
‘The method used to migrate the chat history is unknown, but it’s possible that Google Drive will be used,’ explains WABetaInfo.
‘Note that WhatsApp is still working on multi device and what needs to be synced, so everything might change before the release: the last word has not been said yet.’
Sadly, the site doesn’t have any information on when users will likely see this feature on their own devices. WhatsApp notoriously takes quite a while to test its features and get them out to users.
After all, we’ve been talking about multi-device support on WhatsApp since last September.
At the moment, if you sign in to your WhatsApp account on another phone, it will log you out of the first one as a security precaution. Which, if you regularly use two, can become a bit frustrating.
Initially, users were set to be blocked from the app (which is the most popular messaging app in the word) this week if they refused to agree.
That deadline has now been pushed back.
But the company confirmed to Metro.co.uk that it will not start reducing functionality on May 15. Instead, it will continue asking users to agree to the policy.
After few weeks, these pop-ups will become ‘persistent’, and affected users will start to experience ‘limited functionality’.
They will still be able to accept calls and respond to messages, but they will lose access to their chat list.
A few weeks later, Whatsapp will simply stop sending messages and calls to affected users’ phones.
WhatsApp has not confirmed exactly when these restrictions will begin, but it has said they will not affect all users at the same time.
A WhatsApp spokesperson said in a statement: ‘We’ve spent the last several months providing more information about our update to users around the world.
‘In that time, the majority of people who have received it have accepted the update and WhatsApp continues to grow. However, for those that have not yet had a chance to do so, their accounts will not be deleted or lose functionality on May 15.
‘We’ll continue to provide reminders to those users within WhatsApp in the weeks to come.’
The new privacy rules are designed to help small businesses to communicate with customers through the app, bringing it better in line with Facebook.
User messages will still be encrypted and unreadable to both WhatsApp and Facebook.
MORE : Whatsapp delays plan to block users who don’t accept new privacy terms
MORE : Your WhatsApp account can be suspended by anyone with your phone number
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