WhatsApp has stopped working on millions of smartphones running older editions of popular operating systems.
On February 1, the Facebook-owned messaging platform ended support for smartphones running operating systems older than Android 2.3.7 and iOS version 8.
Since the old operating systems don't receive new security updates from Google and Apple respectively, user data privacy is at risk, so WhatsApp recommends using devices with the latest operating system installed.
- How to use WhatsApp
- WhatsApp dark mode: everything you need to know
- WhatsApp tests self-destructing messages
WhatsApp periodically drops support for older devices this way in order to continue building better features and support for the newer version of operating systems. On January 14, it stopped supporting Windows 10 Mobile, hammering a final nail in the coffin of Microsoft's mobile OS.
Out with the old...
WhatsApp says that Android 2.3.7 Gingerbread powers just 0.3% of Android devices globally, most of which are in developing countries from Asia and Africa.
While distribution data for iOS isn't openly available, devices such as the iPhone 4, which stopped receiving software updates after iOS 7, are set to lose WhatsApp support. The next generation of Apple's devices (including the iPhone 4S), will see updates until iOS 9, and will therefore keep the messaging app.
If you're using one of these older devices, you'll need to either update its its operating system, or upgrade to a newer model if that's not possible. Alternatively, you can access your messages using the WhatsApp desktop app (opens in new tab) (available for Windows and macOS) so you're not left out of the coversation.
- Here are the best mobile phone deals for February 2020
Via BBC (opens in new tab)