WhatsApp Web and its new desktop application

Phillip M Tripp
Mar 19, 2018 · 5 min read

How to use WhatsApp Web on Windows and Mac systems

The WhatsApp instant messaging service is one of the most popular applications in the Spanish-speaking market. For most smartphone users, this application is part of the daily communication. With WhatsApp messages, voice notes, photos and videos are sent and received, and, in the meantime, calls can also be made. The use of these practical functions in the computer is very convenient for many users, for example, in the office. In early 2015, WhatsApp launched a web app “Whatsapp Web” with which it is possible to access all messaging services from the computer. Now, the US group has focused on the development of a desktop application for Windows and Mac OS.

From smartphone to PC: WhatsApp Web vs. native app

WhatsApp users are happy that now they can not only use this service from their smartphones or tablets, but also from their desktop. Earlier this year, the messaging service that now belongs to social networking giant Facebook, launched its desktop versions.

Until then, users could only use WhatsApp from their web app, while now it is possible to download native desktop applications for free. The native apps or native applications are adapted to specific operating systems, in this case, Windows or Mac OS X, while a web app is a web page programmed especially for the web browser. As a result, web apps are independent of the operating system and do not depend on any particular device, working almost in any browser. Visit our guide to learn more about web applications and their differences with native applications.

The new versions of WhatsApp for PC will be the future replacement of the browser tab, used so far for the execution of the messaging service. Both versions are very similar. Because the desktop application is installed permanently, some features work better and its operation is more convenient. Additionally, WhatsApp for PC has some exclusive features:

  • The application is integrable in the automatic start menu, that is, it opens automatically every time the system is started.
  • It has desktop notifications (pop-ups, tones)
  • Unread messages are displayed in the taskbar.
  • The desktop client supports keyboard abbreviations and autocorrect functions.

How to use WhatsApp Web

The desktop application can be downloaded for free from the official WhatsApp website. The PC version is very similar to the web application and its designs are hardly different, and its structure is the same. WhatsApp for PC works under the principle of wrapping app, simulating environments to allow the use of the application in the browser or, in this case, on the desktop. This service is offered by different providers, including the official WhatsApp page.

Previous requirements

As with the web application, any user who wants to use the WhatsApp desktop application needs to have the application installed and enabled on their smartphone . In this way, the native application can create a replica of the message history from the mobile device to the PC.

Important: Because the smartphone must be connected to the Internet while the information is being replicated to your computer, your phone should be connected to a wireless network to reduce the consumption of mobile data.


The versions of WhatsApp Web for PC are available in the official page of the application and its download has no cost:

  • Download link for Mac
  • Download link for Windows

The official requirements of the system are Windows 8 or OS X 10.9 Mavericks, although in some tests, the client also worked without problems in Windows 7.

Scan the QR code

In order to start the native application you need to scan a QR code , for which no additional application is needed. Just open WhatsApp on your smartphone, select “Menu”, then “WhatsApp Web / Desktop” and then open a scanner that allows you to capture the QR code that will appear on your screen.

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Whatsapp Web QR Code Scanning

Synchronize and start

Finally, the smartphone and the computer are synchronized. In a short period of time, WhatsApp web will show all your current conversations in the desktop application and, in addition, you can use almost all the functions of the mobile application.

Alternatives to WhatsApp Web and other desktop applications

In addition to Business, the desktop and smartphone version of WhatsApp, there are also other alternatives to use this instant messaging service on your computer:

  • Franz : Franz is an “all in one” messaging application that combines, in one place, several chat services, such as WhatsApp, Skype and Facebook Messenger. Franz is available as an app and as a desktop client for Windows and Linux.
  • ChitChat : the unofficial program ChitChat is a wrapper app for Mac. ChitChat (formerly WhatsMac) offers WhatsApp Web as a standalone application.
  • Whatsie : Basically, the Whatsie desktop client offers the same features as the official WhatsApp PC application. Whatsie is available for OS X, Windows and Linux. In addition, the user has at his disposal additional functions such as the possibility of choosing his own themes.

WhatsApp: from millions to billions

A few years ago, WhatsApp had approximately 450 million users around the world. Today, the estimated number of users has doubled, reaching, in February 2016, a total of one billion, a record that until now has not obtained any other messaging service. In 2014, WhatsApp was purchased by Facebook, whose Facebook Messenger service currently has about 800 million users.

The most important data about WhatsApp are summarized in:

  • Currently, WhatsApp has more than one billion users.
  • More than 42 billion messages are sent daily.
  • Additionally: 1.6 billion photos
  • and 25 million videos.

Online marketing has already fixed its attention on the potential of the huge target audience of WhatsApp for its commercial strategies. If you want to know more information about it, visit our guide on chatbots. In it we show you how companies use these computer programs to keep in touch with potential customers.

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