How to use WhatsApp on the web: Get WhatsApp on your phone, tablet, laptop AND PC
WhatsApp is now available in your browser, so you can just keep on chatting no matter which device you're using
WhatsApp is now available on the web via the Chrome browser, meaning it's possible to simultaneously access your WhatsApp account on your phone, tablet, laptopand PC without a hack. Here's how to get WhatsApp on your phone, tablet, laptop AND your PC, all at once. To physically install the WhatsApp app on your tablet also see: How to install WhatsApp on iPad: Get WhatsApp on your tablet.
WhatsApp on the Web: Before you begin
WhatsApp on the Web limitations
Note that for now WhatsApp on the web works only with Android, BlackBerry, Nokia and Windows phones, not iOS (iPhones, iPads and iPod touch). WhatsApp says this is due to "Apple platform limitations". You must also be using the Google Chrome web browser, and make sure you are running the latest version of WhatsApp (in Android, launch the Google Play Store, tap the three lines icon at the top left, choose My apps and check whether an update is available for WhatsApp). Also see: WhatsApp ban - what you should know and New WhatsApp charging scam surfaces.
WhatsApp privacy flaw
According to 17-year-old security researcher Indrajeet Bhuyan, a bug within WhatsApp on the Web allows complete strangers to view your profile picture even if you have chosen to keep it hidden. He also notes that images are not blurred out in the conversation thread once they have been deleted by the user, suggesting the WhatsApp mobile and desktop platforms are not yet synched correctly.
How to use WhatsApp on your PC, how to use WhatsApp on your laptop, how to use WhatsApp on your tablet
Step 1. Using WhatsApp in your web browser couldn't be easier. On your computer or tablet launch the Chrome browser (other browsers are not supported) and head tohttps://web.whatsapp.com. We tried this in OS X; it should work on any platform other than iOS using the Chrome browser and ensuring you are viewing the desktop site if you're doing so on a tablet. A QR code will pop up onscreen on your PC. You do not need a QR reader installed on your phone to read this. Note that if you're using a tablet you will need to request the desktop site in Chrome's settings (and no, this won't work in Chrome on an iPad, even if you have an Android phone).
Step 2. Launch WhatsApp on your phone and click the three dots at the top right to access more options, then choose WhatsApp on the web.
Step 3. A QR reader will then open on your phone; point this at your PC screen to read the code and be automatically logged into WhatsApp on the web.
Step 4. The interface will be familiar to WhatsApp phone users, but you should note that desktop notifications are supported, which you may want to switch off in the settings menu for privacy reasons if this is a shared PC. As on the phone, tapping the three-dot icon brings up more options. Select Notifications and then deselect Desktop Alerts and Sounds.
Step 5. Starting a new conversation is slightly different on the desktop. As on the phone you can click the new message icon to select one of your contacts, but in WhatsApp on the web the search function lets you start new conversations as well as filter existing chats.
Step 6. Within a conversation the interface matches that of the phone, with emoticon and mic icons sitting either side of the bottom text-entry field, and a paperclip icon at the top to attach files. Beside this is a more options icon that lets you view contact info. And as on the phone you get the single-, twin- and blue-tick system to show whether messages have been sent, delivered and read. Also see: What do the two blue ticks mean in WhatsApp?
Step 7. Once your phone and computer are connected you are able to manage your logged in computers from your phone via the Options, WhatsApp on the web menu. From here you can log out from all computers, or you can use the options menu in WhatsApp on the web to log out from the PC you're currently using. WhatsApp will by default keep you logged in unless you specify otherwise, but having logged out you'll need to go through the QR code process again the next time you want to log into WhatsApp on that machine.
Messages between phone and browser are instantly synched, so users on limited mobile data contracts should be wary of increased data usage. It's a good idea to switch on your Wi-Fi if you're a heavy WhatsApp user.