WhatsApp, the biggest messaging application in the world with more than 1 billion active users, has launched its first desktop app for Windows 8 and Mac OS 10.9 and up.
It means that Mac users who use anything older than OSX 10.9 Mavericks and Windows users running Windows 7 and older will not have access to the service. Those ones will have to make do with using WhatsApp Web in their browsers.
The messaging app, which has for years lived primarily on mobile phones, is expanding its scope as it announced a few hours ago on its blog that users can now access their messages on their PCs via a native desktop app.
This new desktop app offer more native support, the ability to use keyboard shortcuts, and the ability to have messages open in a separate window as opposed to being in a browser or lost in a sea of tabs.
To log in to the app, you’ll need to scan a QR code using the WhatsApp mobile app. Once you do, all your chats will load. Benefits of using the web app include desktop notifications and access to all your favorite keyboard shortcuts.
Meaning, the app syncs with a WhatsApp user’s account on their mobile device, once they’ve downloaded them and scanned a QR code from inside Settings > WhatsApp Web on the mobile app.
WhatsApp on its blog post said
“Our desktop app is simply an extension of your phone: the app mirrors conversations and messages from your mobile device.”
That is, you can’t use the desktop app if you aren’t already running WhatsApp on your mobile phone(s).
WhatsApp has made itself available on desktop before, through a web client called WhatsApp Web. The company launched that service in January 2015, initially for Android and Windows Phone users, before adding support for iOS users as well.
Just like WhatsApp Web, the new desktop app lets you message with friends and family while your phone stays in your pocket. To download the app visit; https://www.whatsapp.com/download from your desktop browser.