Whatsapp is the world's most popular messaging service and is relied upon by more than one billion people but the messaging behemoth WhatsApp has revealed that millions of its users will no longer be able to access its popular service… for good.
The Facebook-owned company has announced that it is ceasing to develop support for certain operating platforms, which will leave many smartphone users unable to send or receive messages via the app.
But a lot of users could soon be stopped from using the app because it's no longer compatible with millions of smartphones. The issue is caused by a recent version 2.18.90 update, which removes support for some older devices. Whatsapp plans to stop support for all iPhones running iOS 7 by February 1, 2020.
This means anyone who owns an iPhone 4 or earlier will have to buy a new phone. Anyone who owns iPhones produced after this will have to update their device if they want to use Whatsapp.
Now Whatsapp has reportedly jumped the gun a little and made its latest update compatible only with phones running iOS 8 or later. As later versions of iOS cannot be installed on the iPhone 4 or earlier models, the app will no longer be available for new users.
However, if you started using Whatsapp on an iPhone running iOS 7, you will still be able to use the older version of the app until February 2020, when it will stop working for you altogether.
Last year, WhatsApp dropped its support for Nokia Symbian S60 phones. It will do the same for Nokia S40 handsets on December 31 2018 and then devices running Android 2.3.7 and older after 1 February, 2020.
WhatsApp's (doomsday) post reads: "We'll no longer actively develop for [old] operating systems, [so] some features might stop functioning at any time. If you currently use an older operating system, we recommend upgrading to a newer version."
This means that, from today, WhatsApp has stopped new users setting up an account on either iOS 7 or Android Gingerbread operating systems.
And while existing accounts on these platforms may not have their services cut-off immediately, WhatsApp has warned that some features could stop working at any time between now and the final deadline of February 2020.
Since iPhone 4 handsets and older are unable to upgrade to iOS 8, many Apple users may find themselves in the market for a new phone in order to access WhatsApp. That, or they could revert back to good ol' trusty SMS (but that's so 2006).