WhatsApp has released an official desktop application for Mac and Windows app. This could be a safer version of the browser-based client that ran on Chrome browser but won’t be as powerful as most people would have wanted it to be. This is the next iteration of updates that seem to mirror what the self-proclaimed competitor, Telegram messenger, already has in place.
The Native app (download links below) is safer and wieldier, but it isn’t the Swiss pocketknife I expected. You will still need your phone app to run the Native app. Your phone must remain connected to the web to allow mirroring of WhatsApp to your computer.
Anyone who has used WeChat or Telegram will attest to the inconvenience and irrelevance of such a setting. People, or rather I, have been looking forward to something that will run independent and be an absolute alternative to my smartphone client. WhatsApp doesn’t think too well of such an idea.
Why is the WhatsApp Desktop App Better?
Either way, WhatsApp’s move to a native up is a major improvement from the web-based client. The application can now make use native desktop notifications, keyboard shortcuts, and other tweaks to make chatting easier. Those people who like posting long texts on WhatsApp will now find it easier to type, and their recipients will have a better time reading the mini blog posts.
You won’t get a dedicated login screen for your native application. You will have to scan a QR code using your smartphone. In essence, the operation is similar to what was going on at the web client app. Once you have scanned the code, the app will pull all your conversations to your PC or Mac and let you pick up your conversations where you left them.
If you are new to the QR code scan thing, just navigate to Settings> WhatsApp Web > Scan QR Code. This will bring a camera interphase that should scan the QR code on the desktop app before logging you on. Be patient, this could be choppy if you are on a bad network connection.
You’ll have to be running Mac OS X 10.9 or Windows 8 and above to run this application. Here are the download links to the applications. (Use one of the social media options to unlock the link!)