In case you haven’t heard, the messaging application WhatsApp provides a simple, free way to communicate with family, friends, business contacts, and anyone you like, even internationally. With its user friendly messaging system and useful extra features, like picture messages, video messages and a calling feature, it has quickly become the most popular messaging app in the world, with 800 million active users as of April 2015. WhatsApp really opened up the lines of communication by allowing people to send messages over an internet connection, instead of eating up their data or paying for SMS text messages. This means that WhatsApp users can send unlimited messages to any other user, even internationally, for free.
One of the exciting, more recent developments in WhatsApp is the development of a version for PC computers. The goal here was to enrich the user’s experience by allowing them to switch back and forth between computer and smartphone seamlessly. WhatsApp Web, as it’s officially called, is available to download for free just like the mobile application, and will automatically sync with your existing WhatsApp account during the installation process.
Downloading WhatsApp for free to your PC is quick and easy. First, we just need to make sure your devices meet the basic requirements to use WhatsApp Web.
Requirements for WhatsApp PC
The first and most important requirement is that you have to already have the latest version of WhatsApp installed on your phone or mobile device. This is because downloading WhatsApp to your PC doesn’t create its own account; it must sync to an existing mobile account. If your phone doesn’t have WhatsApp installed yet, do that first, and if you do have it installed, make sure that the application is updated.
Next, because the WhatsApp PC app is so new, it isn’t supported by every device yet. Currently, there is no WhatsApp Web support for iPhone or other iOS devices, so you won’t be able to use WhatsApp for PC if you have an iPhone. Supported devices include Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone, Nokia S60 and Nokia S40.
On the computer side of the equation, the WhatsApp Web will work with Microsoft Windows XP, 7 and 8, as well as Apple OS X. You need to be using an updated, quality internet browser like Firefox, Chrome or Opera (OS X users need to use Safari). Internet Explorer won’t work (and is being phased out anyway, but that’s another story).
Download WhatsApp PC for Free
Okay, now that we’ve checked our phones and computers to make sure everything is suitable for the WhatsApp Web download, it’s time to get started. This is an easy installation and will only take a few minutes.
First, on your PC or Apple computer, use one of the supported internet browsers mentioned above and go to https://web.whatsapp.com. You’ll see a QR code; we’re going to scan the code using the WhatsApp on your phone, and that’s how the PC version will sync to the mobile version. To scan the QR code, open WhatsApp on your phone and open the menu from the chats screen (BlackBerry 10 and Nokia S40 users, swipe up from the bottom of the screen to access the menu). A drop down menu will appear; select “WhatsApp Web” and you will be taken to the QR code scanner. Hold your phone up to read the QR code on your computer screen, and the download will start automatically on your PC, while also syncing with the WhatsApp on your phone.
And you’re done! If your PC prompts you with any on screen instructions to setup the program, follow them, and then you can start enjoying all of the features you love about WhatsApp mobile on your PC. Any messages you send and receive on WhatsApp PC will be accessible on your mobile device, and vice versa, giving you total freedom to switch between devices as you please.
Most people who have already used WhatsApp on their mobile phones will know this, but it bears repeating: the WhatsApp PC download, as well as the mobile download, is totally free, and the service is unlimited in terms of the number of messages you can send, how much multimedia you send, etc. The first year of service is free, and after the first year the price for unlimited messaging, even internationally, is just $0.99 per year. As long as you stay connected to Wi-Fi, you’ll save a lot of data using WhatsApp, compared to other messaging apps, and save money as a result.