WhatsApp is the most used social media app around the world but even with its popularity, a lot of features users want are still not available on the app. However, with every new update, WhatsApp has been trying to fill these gaps and make the platform better for its users.
Recently, WhatsApp started rolling out a refreshed calling UI for its beta users. The new UI not only bring convenience when using your phone with one hand but also added a couple of new options to improve the overall calling experience.
In the latest update, WhatsApp rolled out a feature we’ve all been asking for — the multi-device support. This feature has long been available on WhatsApp counterpart, Telegram and although it doesn’t work exactly like the Telegram multi-device feature, it satisfies what users want to some extent.
Before now, if you wanted to use your WhatsApp account on other devices, you need to install the app and transfer your data to that device completely. Doing this will make your account inactive on the first device and you’d have to verify your account again and transfer your data back if you want to continue using it. Also, the second account will become inactive.
However, if you tried to use WhatsApp on PCs, you either had to go the Android emulator way which is the same as installing WhatsApp on a new device or using the WhatsApp link a device feature which requires that you link your device to PC either through the web or using the WhatsApp desktop app.
While the link a device feature has continued to work fine for some years now, it still didn’t give us that multi-device support we needed. But that will change now with the new multi-device features released in the beta channel. You’ll be able to link your WhatsApp account with up to four devices but not smartphones.
Now, you’ll be able to make use of your account independently on your desktop or laptop and even if your phone is not connected to the internet once it’s linked. However, there is a limitation of 14days. If your phone isn’t connected to the internet after a period of 14days after you linked it, you’ll be logged out automatically. I guess that’s a good security measure but I also hope it changes in the future.
Other limitations in the beta include:
- You cannot message or call from the web, desktop or portal to users who have an outdated version of WhatsApp on their phone
- Performance and quality may be affected
- Minor bugs
At the moment, the multi-device feature is only available to a selected few in the WhatsApp beta program and may be rolling out to more beta users in the coming weeks before its final release for all WhatsApp users. If you’re already a beta tested, simply navigate to the link a device section on your WhatsApp to check if you can use the feature. Also, if you’re concerned about how the new multi-device feature affects the apps end-to-end encryption, you can read the full documentation on how WhatsApp implemented the feature here.