WhatsApp may soon allow you to migrate your chat history to a new phone number

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While WhatsApp (and by extension Facebook) has come in for its fair share of flack this year over its new privacy policy, it still remains one of the most used chat apps around.

Whether this is down to general apathy or the fact that nearly everyone’s smartphone-owning parents won’t delete it is up for debate, but it’s likely the chat app is going to work hard to keep as much of its user base fleeing to the likes of Telegram and Signal as it can.

To wit, news has emerged from Android Authority (via WABetInfo) that WhatsApp is working on a new feature that could improve the appeal to the platform quite significantly – the functionality that will allow users to transfer their chats to a different phone number.

Same WhatsApp, different number

The way things work at the moment, your chats are tied to your phone number and if you want to restore a backup when you move to a new phone, you need to have the same OS and same number as your old phone.

Android Authority reports that while chat migration from Android to iOS is already in testing, WhatsApp may also be looking to enable users to move their messages to a new phone number.

Along with chats, there are plans to also allow users to migrate media files to a new number, which means that your favourite gifs and clips will not be lost should you decide to jump ship to a new carrier and a new operating system.

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I've been writing about tech and games for around 20 years. Been playing games since I was tall enough to reach the controls on an arcade machine. Old enough to remember when games weren't something people yelled at each other about.

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