WhatsApp Web officially launches for Google Chrome, no iPhone support for now!

Whatsapp Web
The much leaked Web interface for WhatsApp is now live. As you may have imagined, this allows you to use your computer to send and receive WhatsApp messages. But, true to this app’s very obvious “mobile first” mantra, the Web client is acting simply as an extension of your phone.

Thus, all the messages still actually live on your handset, they’re just shown to you on the Web as well. So your phone needs to be connected to the Internet while you’re using WhatsApp Web on your computer, keep that in mind.

To access the new functionality, you need to have the absolute latest version of WhatsApp for your platform installed on your mobile device. Then you can head to this address from your computer, where you’ll see a QR code. WhatsApp says you should use Chrome. Other browsers may work, but to be 100% sure you’ll need to go with Google’s offering for now.

The next step involves pairing the WhatsApp account on your phone to that computer. For this, you simply scan the QR code from within WhatsApp on your handset. This will be possible through a new Menu option, labeled WhatsApp Web.

Instructions for all mobile platforms are provided on the WhatsApp Web page. If you don’t have that option in the app on your mobile device yet, then either you’re not running the latest version or the company hasn’t enabled the new feature for your account. This seems to be a staged rollout of sorts, so if you’re in this situation a bit of patience will help.

WhatsApp Web is going to be available to you if you use the app on Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, or Nokia’s old S60 OS. Unfortunately the glaring omission in that list is iOS. WhatsApp says it can’t enable the Web client for people using iOS “due to Apple platform limitations”.

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Official WhatsApp for PC is coming soon as shown in these leaked screenshots!

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Alleged screenshots hinting of an upcoming WhatsApp web client have surfaced. Shared on Google+ and shortly removed, the post shows WhatsApp settings screen prompting to pair with a web browser and a trusted computer for a secure connection.

The web client itself hasn’t leaked yet. Sadly, there’s no further information when we can expect WhatsApp to expand beyond smartphones.

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The company provides one of the most popular messaging services worldwide and by the end of August, 2014 reported 700 million monthly active users. Recently, WhatsApp introduced end-to-end encryption on Android and the latest rumor is that it will soon offer voice calls.

This puts WhatsApp in a direct rivalry with the likes of Viber and Skype. It’ll be interesting to see where the competition among these messaging services will take the segment.

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Version 9.3 of Google Maps is here to lead the way: lets you share directions with others

Google has updated its Google Maps for Android app to version 9.3, bringing the ability to share directions, tweaks to location settings notifications, and some bug fixes.

The most prominent feature the update brings to the table is sharable directions. This means that any application accessible through the standard share function can now accept directions, which appear as a list of instructions, something which could be really useful especially when you want to share this information with someone who doesn’t have a smartphone and/or Google Maps installed on their device.

In addition, the updated app now lets you permanently disable the pop-up that appears whenever your location settings aren’t what the app wants them to be. Aside from these features, the update also brings along a few bug fixes.

Head over to Google Play to download the update – it is currently rolling out, so it may take a few days before it reaches everyone.

HERE Maps for Android is now available, iOS coming in early 2015!

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More than a million have already taken HERE for Android beta for a spin, with the most active downloaders coming from Germany and the USA. Today, the playground gets bigger with the beta version of HERE for Android arriving for free on the Google Play store across the world.

Installing the new version from Google Play is simpler and more straightforward than ‘sideloading’ HERE for Android from here.com. Google Play will also make sure that your phone notifies you to update the app, so you can be confident that you will always have the latest version. There is no need to uninstall the existing version, and there will be no need to reinstall downloaded maps or voices.

The app you can download from Google Play brings voice-guided navigation for 18 new countries and territories: Algeria, Angola*, Bangladesh*, Burkina Faso, Côte d’Ivoire, Cyprus, Iraq, Libya, Mauritania, Mauritius, Nepal*, Paraguay, Saint Helena, Senegal*, Sri Lanka*, Suriname*, Zambia*, Zimbabwe*. The addition of these 18 new countries brings the total number of freely navigable countries to 118. Additionally, we improved the stability and performance of the app, and fixed a voice-related navigation bug.

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To help you get started with HERE for Android, we’ve posted a series of stories to take a closer look at the app’s voice-guided navigation, how to manage your offline maps and getting around the city with up-to-date public transit information. We often travel to meet colleagues, friends and family, which is why you can share your real-time location temporarily and safely with integrated Glympse messaging.

We are continuing our work to make HERE for Android even better. Your feedback has already helped us fix bugs and prioritize new features. Talk to us below in the comments section and on Twitter if you have any questions or feedback for the development team. And of course you can rate us in the Google Play store.

Nokia's HERE finally lands on Google Play, offers free offline navigation with audio prompts

Two more things: new here.com and an update on HERE for iOS

here.com also takes its spot in the limelight this week with a new design and cool features that some of you have already tested over the past few weeks. Read more about the new search, focused traffic view and other improvements.

Following the positive reviews of HERE for Android, a lot of people have expressed their interest in an iOS version of our app. We really appreciate this interest and demand. Our iOS app development team is working hard on this and we plan to officially launch HERE for iOS in early 2015.

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