New reports suggest that WhatsApp is about to stop working on older phones by 1 November. The latest run of them have presumably been published because that deadline is now less than a month away.
But many of the devices that are supposedly losing access are not doing so at all. At least some of the phones on that list of 42 devices are fine to keep using WhatsApp as they were before.
So while the 1 November deadline is real, WhatsApp has said that, from that date, it will not be supported on some older phones, it does not affect nearly as many phones as has been reported.
Many of the reports point to WhatsApp’s support page, which does indeed suggest that users need to have at least Android 4.0.4, or iOS 10. Any versions before that are not supported by WhatsApp, and so may lose their connection to the service, as claimed.
That restriction was added to the iOS page at some point around March this year. WhatsApp has long been requiring that devices are updated to those newer versions of the operating system.
The 1 November date seemingly only applies to Android devices. On WhatsApp’s support page, there is a note specifically saying that older devices will lose their access to the service, because “WhatsApp will no longer support Android phones running OS 4.0.4 and older”.
“Please switch to a supported device or save your chat history before then,” WhatsApp advises.
The supposed list of 42 phones is large, though many of them are less mainstream devices. It does however include phones that were widely popular when they were bought, such as older iPhones and a range of Samsung Galaxy devices.
The quickest and most reliable way to know whether you will be affected is to see what operating system you have. To do that, click through to settings and find the version number; if it is lower than the required update, and there’s no option to download a new one, then you are most likely affected by the change.
If that is the case, then it might be time to either get a new device or save your chats in case you lose them, or both. Switching onto a new Android phone from an older one is relatively easy, though if you decide to switch for an iPhone it might prove slightly more complicated
You might also want to export your chat history so that you have it to hand in case something happens to your account or WhatsApp either because of the deadline or the change to a new phone.
Here are the list of 42 phones to stop working after 1 November;
IPhone SE, 6s and 6s Plus
The Samsung Galaxy Trend Lite, Galaxy Trend II, Galaxy S2, Galaxy S3 mini, Galaxy Xcover 2, Galaxy Core and Galaxy Ace 2
The LG Lucid 2, Optimus F7, Optimus F5, Optimus L3 II Dual, Optimus F5, Optimus L5, Optimus L5 II, Optimus L5 Dual, Optimus L3 II, Optimus L7, Optimus L7 II Dual, Optimus L7 II, Optimus F6, Enact, Optimus L4 II Dual, Optimus F3, Optimus L4 II, Optimus L2 II, Optimus Nitro HD and 4X HD, and Optimus F3Q.
The ZTE Grand S Flex, ZTE V956, Grand X Quad V987 and Grand Memo.
The Huawei Ascend G740, Ascend Mate, Ascend D Quad XL, Ascend D1 Quad XL, Ascend P1 S and Ascend D2.
The Sony Xperia Miro, Sony Xperia Neo L and Xperia Arc S.
The Alcatel One Touch Evo 7, Archos 53 Platinum, HTC Desire 500, Caterpillar Cat B15, Wiko Cink Five, Wiko Darknight, Lenovo A820, UMi X2, Faea F1 and THL W8.