WhatsApp to stop working on some devices by the end of 2016 – find out if your model is affected

 

WhatsApp has said that its messaging app will cease to work on older phones and operating systems as early as the end of this year.

The announcement comes after a warning earlier this year that the Facebook-owned company would be pulling support for older models, and that the deadline to upgrade was fast approaching.

The same blog post was then updated to say some phones would be supported until June 30, 2017, while the service would be discontinued on others by the end of this year.

The blog says: “When we started WhatsApp in 2009, people’s use of mobile devices looked very different from today. The Apple App Store was only a few months old. About 70 per cent of smartphones sold at the time had operating systems offered by BlackBerry and Nokia.

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“As we look ahead to our next seven years, we want to focus our efforts on the mobile platforms the vast majority of people use.”

Those using certain handsets will have to buy new ones if they want to use the world’s most popular messaging app, which has a billion users globally.

“While these mobile devices have been an important part of our story, they don’t offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app’s features in the future,” a spokesperson said. (Video calling was recently added to WhatsApp)

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iPhone users

WhatsApp will stop working on iPhone 3GS at the end of this year.

It will also cease to function any iPhone running iOS 6, so any phone which hasn’t been updated to a later operating system will lose WhatsApp.

The change also affects first, second, third or fourth generation iPads that haven’t been updated.

Android users

WhatsApp will cease to function on any Android tablet or phone running Android 2.1 or 2.2.

This affects any phone released between 2010 and 2011 which hasn’t been updated.

Windows phone users

Anyone still using Windows Phone 7 will not be able to use WhatsApp anymore.

Blackberry and Nokia users

People who have these phones are safe until June 2017: BlackBerry OS, BlackBerry 10, Nokia S40 and Nokia Symbian S60.

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WhatsApp Video Calling is now Official, Here’s how it works!

Facebook-owned WhatsApp announced yesterday that it had begun rolling out video calling to the more than one billion users it claims across iOS, Android and Windows Phone platforms around the world.

According to TechCrunch, video calls on WhatsApp are end-to-end encrypted just like with FaceTime in order to prevent rogue parties from eavesdropping on your communications.

WhatsApp previously rolled out end-to-end encryption for chats. “We obviously try to be in tune with what our users want,” WhatsApp co-founder Jan Koum told Reuters. “We’re obsessed with making sure that voice and video work well even on low-end phones.”

You can call a person you’re chatting with, provided each party has updated their copy of WhatsApp to the latest version, by tapping a new Call button in the top-right. A prompt goes up, asking if you’d like to place a voice or video call.

The in-call screen provides the controls to switch between phone cameras, mute and hang up the call. Video calls use iOS 10’s CallKit to integrate with Contacts and Phone’s Recents/Favorites. They also appear on the Lock screen like regular cellular phone calls. You can place video calls to WhatsApp contacts via Siri, too.

The thumbnail video shown during the call can be moved around and you can also flick a video call in progress to the side to minimize it while chatting. WhatsApp video calling is supported in 180 countries. Facebook has allowed WhatsApp to use its servers and bandwidth around the world for both voice and video.

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Other cross-platform apps that support voice calling include Viber, Facebook Messenger, Skype and Google Duo, to name but a few. Of course, Apple’s FaceTime has supported end-to-end encrypted video calling since its inception, but Apple has failed to fulfill its original promise of open-sourcing FaceTime and making it an industry standard.


WhatsApp is also testing a two-factor authentication system in the latest beta, but it’s unclear when this security-enhancing feature might be ready for prime time. With two-factor authentication, a unique one-time code generated by a dedicated authenticator app is required before a new device can sign in to your account on the service.

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Samsung “paying extra careful attention” to Galaxy S8 development due to “huge changes”

Unperturbed by its ill-fated Note 7 flagship, which Samsung has now permanently stopped building due to ongoing battery woes, development of a next-generation Galaxy smartphone is in full swing. Reportedly, the troubled South Korean company is “paying extra careful attention” towards the development of the Galaxy S8.

That’s not just because of quality control issues with the Note 7, but also due to the fact that the Galaxy S8 packs in some “huge” hardware and design changes, according to a new report Tuesday from Korean news site ET News.

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“Due to the issues with the Note 7, Samsung Electronics is paying extra careful attention towards development of Galaxy S8,” reads the Korean report.

According to the report, the S8 should have the features Apple is expected to engineer into its Tenth Anniversary iPhone next year, including a bezel-free curved screen with a redesigned Home button/fingerprint reader embedded underneath the glass panel, a dual-lens camera out the back and Qualcomm’s new Snapdragon 830 chip.

Basically, Samsung is planning to fill all of the Galaxy S8’s front display with just the screen, just like Apple is expected to do with the next iPhone, as imagined by the below concept rendering.

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“It is heard that Samsung Electronics is planning to eliminate even top and bottom edges of display for Galaxy S8,” creating a full-screen smartphone.

The side bezels should be made even skinnier than on current Galaxies by increasing the curvature of both edges of the AMOLED display. Samsung’s display-making arm should play an important role in volume production of that screen.

As for the Galaxy S8’s dual-cameras, Samsung is currently deciding whether to use all-in-one dual-cameras or separated dual-cameras, said a representative for a component industry. All-in-one dual-cameras have two lenses and a module versus separated dual-cameras that have two separate modules.

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Samsung’s dual-cameras will be used to capture depth of field photos akin to the iPhone 7 Plus and are said to be 16 megapixels and eight megapixels versus a pair of 12-megapixel cameras on Apple’s phone.

As for the device’s brains, Samsung’s foundry business is said to start volume production of the Snapdragon 830 chip on a 10-nanometer FinFET process at the end of this year at the earliest, beating rival TSMC. Like the current Galaxy, certain S8 models will use Samsung’s next-generation Exynos chip in place of the Qualcomm one.

The previously rumored Exynos 8995 chip is said to incorporate a 16-nanometer Mali-G71 GPU manufactured by ARM, which appears to be a direct successor to the T880 model found within the Exynos 8990 that’s being used in the Galaxy S7 series and the ill-fated Note 7.

Using ARM’s new Bifrost architecture developed with 4K display and virtual reality applications in mind, the GPU should be almost twice as fast as its predecessor.

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Digital Music News recently heard from sources that Samsung Mobile’s leadership is considering removing the 3.55mm headphone jack from the Galaxy S8.

The next Galaxy is expected to release in the first quarter of next year. For what it’s worth, we know from a leaked invite that the next Samsung Unpacked event will be taking place at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain on February 26.

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Samsung permanently discontinues the Galaxy Note7

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Samsung has announced that it is ending the production of the Galaxy Note7 and permanently discontinuing it worldwide.

The decision comes immediately after the company issued a press release asking users to power down all original and replaced Note7 units, and for retailers and career partners to stop sales and exchanges of the smartphone.

“We remain committed to working diligently with appropriate regulatory authorities to take all necessary steps to resolve the situation.” said Samsung in a statement yesterday.

The decision to end the Note7 production is the final step in a rather tumultuous journey. After being announced back in August and being met with generally positive reviews, the Note7 first came under fire — quite literally — after reports of units exploding surfaced on the internet. After 35 cases had been reported, Samsung issued an official recall of the device, which sent everyone in a tizzy and airlines and airport authorities calling for an official ban on usage of the device in several countries.

Samsung did what it could, replacing not just the affected but every Note7 it sold and issuing a new device with an updated battery pack and a green battery indicator so the customers and authorities alike could tell them apart. It even restricted the older devices from charging beyond 60% so people who hadn’t replaced theirs yet wouldn’t overcharge them.

But after the replacement units also started catching fire, most notably one on a Southwest Airlines flight 994 from Louisville to Baltimore, which had to be evacuated when a passenger’s replacement Note7 caught fire, Samsung eventually asked everyone to power them down. And finally did what was inevitable and, some might argue, what should have been done from the beginning, pulled the plug entirely on the Note7.

We are waiting to hear from Samsung on how it plans to proceed with existing Note7 devices that are out there and also how it deals with customers who have pending orders.

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Sony announces an aftermarket Apple CarPlay & Android Auto audio system for $499

Sony has announced its first smart car audio system, the XAV-AX100. The system is compatible with both, Apple CarPlay as well as Android Auto, so regardless of which smartphone you have you are covered.

The double DIN system has a large capacitive touchscreen display up front with physical buttons to change the track and also a rotating volume dial so you can control basic system functions without taking your eyes away from the road.

It also includes a 4x 55W amp with Sony’s Extra Bass feature, and a 10-band equalizer. You also get 3 pre-out connectivity ports for connecting additional amplifiers and other accessories. The Dynamic Stage Organizer feature also compensates for the downward firing door speakers and improves clarity.

The XAV-AX100 is priced at $499.99 and will be available in North America by late November.

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