Facebook-owned messaging app WhatsApp is dropping several mobile platforms and focusing its attention on Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, according to a blog post from the company late last week.
Seven year-old WhatsApp noted that at their launch in 2009, around 70 per cent of smartphones were run on BlackBerry and Nokia operating systems, while only 25 per cent ran on systems created by Apple, Google and Microsoft. Today, the latter own about 99.5 per cent of sales today.
By the end of 2016, the company will be ceasing support for: BlackBerry, including BlackBerry 10, Nokia S40, Nokia Symbian S60, Android 2.1 and Android 2.2 (older Android operating systems) and Windows Phone 7.1.
WhatsApp added further:
“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. If you use one of these affected mobile devices, we recommend upgrading to a newer Android, iPhone, or Windows Phone before the end of 2016 to continue using WhatsApp.”
Surprisingly, WhatsApp mentioned Windows Phone as The Verge has speculated that it is the end of road for the handset line and that there may be a Surface phone in the mix at some point. They further indicated that the Windows platform may have a home, but not in the immediate future.