20 April 2018
As is the lay of the tech land, old technology and software slowly gets phased out after it gets dated. With each new software release, it gets more and more difficult to maintain older versions. While BlackBerry wants to support its BBOS and BB10 platforms for some more years, app developers like Whatsapp have other ideas. The popular chat messaging app has decided to stop support for older platforms starting December 31st.
On the current phase-out list for Whatsapp are BlackBerry OS, Blackberry 10 and Windows Phone 8.0. The company already dropped support for Windows Phone 7.0 and Android versions older than 2.3.3 back in 2016. In the future, Android version 2.3.7 is on the list, which will be phased out by February 2020.
It is not clear why Android 2.3.7 still gets support for two years more, considering that now only 0.4% devices are running that OS. But this is perhaps because Android 2.3.7 still includes features that Whatsapp is using for extending its functionality.
Following Android 2.3.7, support for Nokia S40 is also going to be pulled on 31st December 2018.
Regarding the phase-out, Whatsapp released a statement in a blog post:
These platforms don’t offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app’s features in the future. If you use one of these affected mobile devices, we recommend upgrading to a newer OS version, or to a newer Android running OS 4.0+, iPhone running iOS 7+, or Windows Phone 8.1+ so that you can continue using WhatsApp.
For those of you still using these dated platforms, Whatsapp might not stop working immediately, but some functionality might take a hit which will impact the overall user experience. And since 'no support' means 'no software updates', it would be best to upgrade to a newer OS version, or to a newer device.