WhatsApp begins testing multi-device capability

“Today, we’re announcing the rollout of a limited public beta test for WhatsApp’s updated multi-device capability.”

What you need to know

  • WhatsApp is rolling out multi-device capability.
  • A small number of users can now test the feature.
  • It will let you sign in to WhatsApp on multiple devices and have the data synced between them.

Facebook has confirmed that it is beginning the test of multi-device capability for WhatsApp, letting users sign in and use the platform on up to four devices.

In an announcement the company stated:

Today, we’re announcing the rollout of a limited public beta test for WhatsApp’s updated multi-device capability.

With this new capability, you can now use WhatsApp on your phone and up to four other nonphone devices simultaneously — even if your phone battery is dead. Each companion device will connect to your WhatsApp independently while maintaining the same level of privacy and security through end-to-end encryption that people who use WhatsApp have come to expect. Importantly, we have developed new technologies to maintain end-to-end encryption while still managing to sync your data — such as contact names, chat archives, starred messages, and more — across devices.

Facebook says the new system means you no longer need to use your phone as “the source of truth” that supports all your other devices when using WhatsApp. The company also says that data remains encrypted and private. The new feature is being tested with a “small group of users” from the existing WhatsApp beta program. The company says it will continue to optimize performance and add news features “before slowly rolling it out more broadly”. That means only a very limited number of people will have access to the service initially. Facebook has also confirmed those people can opt out of the feature if they don’t like it.

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