WhatsApp will no longer work for BlackBerry 10 users
BlackBerry has suffered yet another blow, after popular messaging app WhatsApp announced it will end support for all BlackBerry devices by the end of the year.
In a blog post celebrating its seventh birthday, WhatsApp explained that BlackBerry simply isn’t a platform people use anymore, noting it wants to focus its efforts on the “mobile platforms the vast majority of people use.”
“When we started WhatsApp in 2009, people’s use of mobile devices looked very different from today. The Apple App Store was only a few months old. About 70 per cent of smartphones sold at the time had operating systems offered by BlackBerry and Nokia,” read the blog post.
By the end of 2016, the company said it will end support for BlackBerry – including BlackBerry 10, the company’s latest operating system – along with Nokia S40, Nokia Symbian S60, Android 2.1 and Android 2.2 and Windows Phone 7.1
“While these mobile devices have been an important part of our story, they don’t offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app’s features in the future,” said the company.
So what do you do if you use BlackBerry and rely on WhatsApp for messaging?
According to the company, the answer is simple – stop using BlackBerry. The blog post concluded users should upgrade to a “newer Android, iPhone, or Windows Phone” before the end of the year in order to keep using its services.
But the move could mark yet another nail in the coffin for BlackBerry’s own operating system.
Over the years, as BlackBerry has lost its market share to Android and iPhone, its main criticism has been a lack of apps. Facebook-owned WhatsApp app is one of the most commonly used on the smartphone market, boasting over 900 million users sending over 10 billion messages a day.
The ailing Waterloo, Ont.-based smartphone maker has recently switched its focus to building Android phones.
In November, the company launched the BlackBerry Priv – an Android-run BlackBerry handset that focuses on security. Aside from unique design features – including the slide-out QWERTY keyboard and flashing LED notification light that BlackBerry has become well-known for – the company’s developers modified the operating system to add some of BlackBerry’s strengths.
While reviews for the device were favourable overall, it failed to create the hype the company needed.
WhatsApp will still work on the BlackBerry Priv.
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