WhatsApp is rolling out support for Wear OS smartwatches, allowing users to access the popular messaging app on their wrists. The app was previously introduced on the WhatsApp beta update channel and is now available to all users. WhatsApp is offering support for a handful of features that will allow users to quickly respond to messages without reaching for their smartphone. There's no word from the Meta-owned messaging platform on plans to introduce WhatsApp for watchOS, Apple's operating system for its smartwatches.
The arrival of Wear OS support for WhatsApp was announced by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Wednesday. In order to use WhatsApp on your Android smartwatch, it will need to be running on Wear OS 3. You can start a new chat with another user, or respond to messages with emoji, text, and voice messages, Meanwhile, you can also receive calls from your wrist and see notifications and respond to messages on the go over LTE.
It is worth noting that the app was previously rolled out to beta testers in May, but the stable version was released days before Samsung's next Galaxy Unpacked event in South Korea. The company is expected to unveil two new smartwatch models — the Samsung Galaxy Watch 6 and Galaxy Watch 6 Classic — at the event, alongside new foldable phones and a S-series tablet.
There's currently no word from WhatsApp on whether it plans to introduce a watchOS app for WhatsApp, which would bring the ability to use the popular app to Apple Watch owners. Back in May, Meta dropped support for its watchOS app for Messenger. WhatsApp users on watchOS currently rely on third-party apps that could pose a privacy or security risk.
After downloading version 184.108.40.206 of WhatsApp for Wear OS on your smartwatch, you can link it to your WhatsApp account on your smartphone. The app will then sync recent chats from your smartphone to the wearable device. Just like the WhatsApp app for Android and iOS, the Wear OS version also protects chats, voice messages, and other content with end-to-end encryption, which means their contents are only visible to the sender and recipient of the messages.
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