After years of staying away, WhatsApp today has finally launched a desktop app both for Windows and Mac users. The app is quite similar to WhatsApp for Web that was launched last year. The app syncs with the user’s phone and requires it to be connected to the Internet. Also Read - WhatsApp is soon to change the way your data is backed up: What it means?Also Read - WhatsApp introduces 'Papa Mere Papa' stickers to celebrate Father's Day: How to download, send?
In order to start using WhatsApp for desktop, you will first have to install the WhatsApp app, which is available for Windows 8+ and Mac OS 10.9+. Then open the desktop app as well as WhatsApp on your smartphone. Go to settings on the smartphone app and hit WhatsApp Web. Scan the QR code on the desktop app and your phone’s WhatsApp will be paired to the desktop app.
However, rather than going for a standalone app, WhatsApp has opted for an app that just mirrors the conversations from the mobile app. In other words, you cannot use the desktop app if your phone has run out of battery or it is not connected to the Internet.
This is an interesting development nevertheless and could be the precursor to the video calling feature that was spotted in a recent WhatsApp beta build.
WhatsApp claims it has more than a billion monthly active users. Last month it launched end-to-end encryption across the platform including chats, media and voice calls, making it impossible for anyone to listen in. On the app front, it has added new features including the ability to share different file formats.