Incidentally, WhatsApp has been there on Windows for a while. However, it was the legacy version and based on the older Windows platform. At the same time, the new UWP version of WhatsApp has been in testing for a long time now and it was available to beta testers for quite some time. The older version used the WhatsApp Web-like interface instead of matching the design and theme of the native Windows app. The updated WhatsApp app has changed things both in terms of appearance and functionality.
If you are wondering what they are and whether you should be downloading the latest WhatsApp app on Windows. Here’s everything you need to know about it.
How to download
The new WhatsApp on Windows is available via Microsoft Store and users can simply click on the Store icon (can be found pinned on the taskbar) and search for WhatsApp. From the search results, tap on WhatsApp icon (make sure the app is from WhatsApp Inc) and hit the install button.
What has changed
First let’s talk about the changes that Zukerberg talked about in his official blog post. The new WhatsApp app now loads faster and also enables group video calls with up to 32 people. In addition, the app also comes with improvements to make device linking easier and with faster syncing across multiple devices.
About other changes that we noticed the updated WhatsApp app’s design and theme matches the Windows 11’s Fluid design. It has got rounded corners, updated interface and menu layouts, buttons, etc for a better user experience.
Starting with the basic user interface, the older version had the exact same UI elements as we see on WhatsApp. It lacked some basic dedicated options like Calls. However, the newer version has a vertically placed menu options – Chat, Calls and Status. Apart from this, the menu page that shows additional information has also changed here. For instance, the Settings page now opens as a popup compared to an entirely new page that hid the contact list. The same applies to Contact information page which now appears as pop-up sliding page instead covering the chat section when clicked on the profile icon.
Another change is that the new version has rounded corner and it adheres to the Windows dark theme pretty well.
While the new version of WhatsApp on Windows adds features, there are some that have gone missing as well. For instance, the new version does not have the dedicated Communities button. Similarly, it misses out on the ability to create new Stickers that the older version offered.