Whatsapp don't retain messages/media after they've been delivered to your phone, which is a compelling privacy feature for many.
It's also what allows them to serve such an enormous user base with limited hardware. Their technology stack (FreeBSD/Erlang) is pretty interesting, more info here:
2014 talks by Rick Reed:
There's likely no technical reason why you couldn't use a pc instead of a phone for users that want to use the pc as the primary client (with the phone optionally accessing the DB on the pc in the same way that the desktop client does for the phone). Perhaps they've decided that this is a small and declining market.
Slides for second talk
440k connections/sec, 1.1 million msgs/sec, 1 billion images/day, and that was in 2014...
Any personal computer built in the last five years can do anything a smartphone or tablet can in terms of processing power and connectivity. A smartphone is a computer with hardware that enables it to use cell phone networks and make calls.
My inner cynic strongly suspects that Facebook and other similar corporations really like the control they have on the overall user experience on the two major mobile operating systems; i.e., eyeballs on a smartphone or tablet are worth more than those on a general purpose computing device.
Too much freedom on a personal computer; with browsers that feature all kind of privacy enhancing add-ons such as ad-blockers and tracker-blockers. Much harder to monetize.
So are you saying that a desktop PC's hard drive can't handle storage of some text messages but a phone can?
For consumers (and facebook is a consumer company) it's all about who owns mobile (and can also compete with facebook). They want desktop to just be enough of a feature to be more appealing than other platforms, but not enough that it detracts from mobile.
Imagine a scenario where you were to get rid of the phone number and had sessions open on the desktop and the web. WhatsApp servers have no way of knowing where the phone number went or if it will be online ever again or if you continue to own the phone number, or someone else owns it. They need to route the msgs through that phone/number combination all the time, because it's the single source of truth.
Its security and privacy that's preventing them from providing the feature you're asking for.
If they detach individual user's identity from a phone number, may be then they can be a true cross platform (web, phone, desktop) messaging app.
Another advantage of using phone numbers is that people actually have other people's numbers in their phone address books, which whatsapp uses. Very few people have their friends' email addresses on their contacts.
Being able to sync across all your devices requires they start storing all of your communications centrally, which defeats the whole information security model.
But i found whatsapp is next to mp3 in my and my friends phone so it is not easy from bandwidth perspective
Or home phone numbers (landlines) for that matter. Let people use a landline number on a tablet.
The only problem I recall is that the initial text verification doesn't work - I had to do the phone call option - but this is a problem with gvoice, not WhatsApp: google blocks pretty much all server-triggered texts.
I don't have the slightest idea on how to fix it. The only reason it worries me a bit is that I might miss texts from other people.
Switched to an iPhone so I could use "Find Friends" with spouse and kids.
Whatsapp makes you to stay connected at the same time on your phone to use their web/desktop apps.
It seems that was the main reason people didn't like Jabber to start with.
I haven't analysed any traffic and I'm not a developer but my layman's guess would be that the WhatsApp mobile app has a pre-prepared Zip file (or some other compressed container) with the 20 most recent messages from each chat plus these compressed image thumbnails and the Web Client pulls that data from the phone upon initialising. I doubt it is a big data transfer.
Using mitmproxy to snoop my phone, I see that all the data coming into my computer when I open up Whatsapp Web is originating from my phone. Including pictures.
That being said, all of my current conversations are on the new "end-to-end-encryption" thing, which might make a difference.
You can test this by trying to download an image for the first time after a few weeks, it will tell you that the image is no longer available, and you should ask the other recipient to send it again.
The time Whatsapp web takes to download images and messages is far way faster than my actual 2G network on phone.
WhatsApp managed to load all my conversations (I don't have many) and the most recent message, for display in the list-view. But each conversation only has the most recently sent message. After a while I got a "Phone Not Connected" message. Seems like it really is only stored on your phone.
Yes, that's why I think so. They easily loads all the messages and images in just few seconds even when my phone's internet is too slow.
They won't let you use the web app when you're phone is disconnected, so there's no way to confirm it.
Your phone has the data on it. Intranet speeds on most wifi networks these days is faster than 50Mbps. That's more than fast enough to transfer all your messages and photos with little to no lag.
It doesn't matter how fast your connection to the WWW is because you're not using the WWW to transfer the data, you're using the wifi intranet.
That makes it easy to send all the data necessary from your phone to your computer in the blink of an eye, because intranet wifi speeds are very fast.
On my iPhone, backups can be stored, but through iCloud, not on Whatsapp servers.
You need a phone number just to create an account first, you can turn it off after that.
You can send messages to all of your facebook friends through facebook.com on any device, as you always could.
most likely their internal system can only think in telephone numbers or something like that
If the Whatsapp team actually tracked the rate of user engagement with these Desktop/Web editions & compared this to the Smartphone/Tablet apps. They would agree with you.
Surely you are talking about them tracking the rate of user engagement across their userbase, not just the data of you alone?
It being a collection of wrappers is either true or not and is not necessarily a value judgment, but a technical detail.
Edit: Tried it out. It's visually pretty but it wouldn't even let me add my Slack account (we use SSO, maybe they haven't updated for that). And then when I clicked the Send Email to Franz, the email was prepopulated with some social "download franz!" message.
Still pleased to use it, I don't like the Skype client for Linux.
And so far, I've not seen any differences or platform specific bugs.
Sure, you'd expect a big company like WhatsApp to do QA testing on every platform they release for, but it's a shame that even with the barrier of entry is so negligibly low, that they still won't provide a Linux build. Even if it's just for the latest Ubuntu LTS that's fine, other distros can repackage it themselves.
2/ if you don't like the Desktop App (or are using Linux), you can use https://web.whatsapp.com/ and/or the Chrome extension WhatsChrome https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/whatschrome/bgkodf...
No it doesn't. Multiple devices is a special case of multiple recipients, which the Signal protocol handles (and I presume Whatsapp does as well). See more details here (https://whispersystems.org/blog/private-groups/)
Now, that doesn't mean it already works in Signal/Whatsapp, because they have other constraints. But it's not PFS that prevents it.
FB did not pay billions for the most popular chat app just to let 1 billion people use it for free forever...
Their servers do not store unencrypted messages so they need to come from the phone.
That's why some people criticise Telegram: Their messages have to be stored unencrypted for their setup to work.
It seems like there should be ways to do it without storing unencrypted data.
This scheme has various weaknesses, eg. a rogue key could be associated with someone's account without their knowledge, and anyone who sends this person messages will therefore be sending a copy encrypted with the rogue key.
Store them the same way they store today.
When the first device picks up the message, mark as delivered, when the user reads it, mark as read.
Something along those lines, I guess.
EDIT: message is encrypted, but not it's metadata, as the server must know where it came from and where it is going to.
Edit: remove some stuff.
If both would allow similar technology they not only would be fighting over the same market, but would be easy target to anti-monopoly bodies.
It would be also very useful for the few times that I run out of battery.
Some ways in which the official app is better:
* The official app extends to the edges of the window, whereas the web app has a "window on a background" design, which takes up more space.
* The official app has keyboard shortcuts.
* The official app has better notifications.
A couple weeks ago. One thing it does better than the official app is that on Mac the red window button hides the window rather than terminating the process.
> Because the app runs natively on your desktop, you'll have support for native desktop notifications, better keyboard shortcuts, and more.
Plus, on my OS at least, I can even search for the window by its title. That, combined with workspaces, is an organizer's godsend.
Do you mean alt+tab in Windows?
Oh! This is perhaps also why I get annoyed by cmd+tab on Macs!!
Which wm on which os do you use? gnome kde or something else?
I do know how it works on Mac, it's just my muscles don't.
> Which wm on which os do you use? gnome kde or something else?
Kwin (from the KDE suite) on Arch Linux.
Hamburger Menu ->
More Tools ->
Add to Desktop
Edit: I downloaded and successfully launched this on Windows 7. It seems like a standard Electron app. Now I wonder if the Windows 8 requirement is purely for tech support reasons, or if there's some specific feature that would fail on Windows 7.
Unrelated to market share & OS updates, there's the technical question. There aren't many Win32 APIs which are present in Windows 8, but not Windows 7. Thus it's not that likely that Windows 7 wouldn't be supported by a Win32 app (which this is), unless they go out of their way to make it so.
According to Wikipedia I'm not: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Windows_7#Support_lifecycle
"Mainstream support for 7 ended on January 13, 2015."
I think it's reasonable that businesses don't support an OS version beyond the OS's provider's own "mainstream support".
> Thus it's not that likely that Windows 7 wouldn't be supported by a Win32 app (which this is), unless they go out of their way to make it so.
Possibly, but listing support on their website means they support it, and why should they do that if, again, Microsoft itself does not?
Extended support will end on January 14, 2020
I'll keep using my custom wrapper with NW.js (apparently this uses electron) until this behaviour is implemented...
I removed whatsapp from my phone precisely because it took up too much space, with all the photos and videos being shared daily. It's a shame really.. a desktop app would've been a great alternative
But to save space on your phone, it's easy to turn off automatic storage of media, on iOS this is under Settings > Chats > Save Incoming Media. I've had it turned off for a long time to stop my camera roll filling with meme pics.
Why not just turn off auto media download?
Now please Signal. Give me something we can all work with.
The only other reason to adapt open standards and an open protocol would be government pressure and legislation in the US or the EU.
edit: on the plus side, looks like it's just their web app repackaged using Electron. Still not sure what all these helpers are for though
But since most people use iCloud to sync that address book with their Mac and their phone its moot. If you open WhatsApp on your phone, it will take a trip through your contacts and upload everything to their servers. Which, I still maintain, is stupid and unnecessary and the numer one reason why I never bothered with WhatsApp.
It's an IM client. So let me put my numer in and that's it. If I want to use it, I probably already know the people that also use it. So if they in turn also hae uploaded their number, I could search for it and add it. Have them confirm out connection and chat away. There is no need to grab all my contacts' information without their consent.
That should work just fine for you, I'd imagine.
Also, Hangouts would not need phone tethering
Also, it starts up with your operating system with a floating icon which stays at top of the windows if you want, and provides notifications. Your friends can use that if they want to stick to hangouts.
[Hangouts Chrome App](https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/google-hangouts/nc...)
Some of these may have changed since I abandoned Hangouts last year for Telegram, which still has the best desktop experience.
Are you using a Mac by any chance?
Edit: removed lots of unnecessary text : )
White background with a list of users to the side. Isn't that a ripoff of well, half of messaging apps.
"A Mac app wrapper around WhatsApp's web client, WhatsApp Web. https://web.whatsapp.com/"