Finally! After years of messing about with iCloud and Google Drive, Meta’s CEO, Mark Zuckerberg, has announced a change to WhatsApp that’ll make transferring chats and large files across devices that much easier. No longer will we have to fiddle around with the cloud, according to Meta’s Overlord.
Scan this QR code, Scotty
The new method, which Zuckerberg showed off in a Facebook post, involves bypassing your device’s cloud backups, and instead pulls all the data it needs from a QR code shown on your old phone. The idea, obviously, is to save time, though it’s also a handy tool for those confined to iCloud’s free tier 5GB storage limit.
And judging by the above video, it’s doing that rather quickly – though that’s mostly determined by a user’s WiFi speed and backup size.
Unfortunately, the feature is limited and only allows transfers from Android to Android or iOS to iOS. No cross-platform mixing yet. There are ways of doing this, though the process is long and complicated and should be avoided wherever possible. (If that’s you, here are WhatsApp’s tips for doing exactly that – Android to iPhone and iPhone to Android).
Zuckerberg’s announcement failed to mention any sort of release date. We know WhatsApp’s been pushing the beta build of the feature to both Android and iOS users (thanks, WABetaInfo), which, going by WhatsApp’s track record, means an update can’t be too far away from an official rollout. When the update does finally go live, it’ll be found in WhatsApp’s Settings > Chats >, where you’ll find the new Chat transfer option, according to WABetaInfo.