WhatsApp is finally close to multi-device support

It is about time.
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One of the more unbelievable things about WhatsApp — one of the most widely used messaging platforms in the world — is its lack of multi-device support. You can use it on your phone, but if you’re hoping to see those same messages on your tablet, you’re SOL.

Fortunately, it sounds like WhatsApp and parent company Facebook plan to finally address this issue in the coming months. As WABetaInfo (via The Verge) reported (after having a WhatsApp-only interview with Mark Zuckerberg and WhatApp’s Will Cathcart, no less), multi-device support will enter a beta stage within the next few months.

I spent a lot of time in Mexico over the past two years, and there — like in so many other countries in the world — WhatsApp is the messaging app. As such, I happen to know a lot of people who use the platform now, and one of the most frustrating things about staying in touch with them is the fact that I constantly need my phone around to do it.

Multi-device support will finally put WhatsApp on par with something like Facebook’s own Messenger app, in that you’d be able to access your account and messages regardless of whether you’re using a phone, a tablet, or perhaps a PC. And as Zuckerberg noted, the app hopes to accomplish that while still maintaining end-to-end encryption — a key feature.

WhatsApp has some other features in store, as well, such as “view once” messages and a “disappearing mode” so everything you send vanishes after being viewed. Some users will undoubtedly appreciate these additions. The real story here, though, is multi-device support. It’s been a long time coming. Hopefully it arrives sooner rather than later.