WhatsApp has released a new version of its application for Windows that no longer needs to be connected to your smartphone and can work completely independently.
Previously, the WhatsApp client for Windows 11 (and 10) was a web-based (Electron) effort, but the new app – which has just moved from beta to full release, as On the edge (opens in new tab) reports – it is a native client and, moreover, it works independently of your smartphone.
In other words, even if your phone is offline, you will receive messages in the WhatsApp desktop client on Windows.
As a native messaging software, expect WhatsApp to run much more smoothly on Windows, and also the interface has been tweaked to look a bit smarter and streamlined.
You can get the reviewed app from the Microsoft Store (opens in new tab), although it does note that not everyone seems to have access to the new version just yet, and it looks like the new app is being rolled out gradually in stages by WhatsApp. So if you’re still seeing the old version in the store, be patient and wait a little longer; the new customer is coming, rest assured.
Review: A big step forward for Windows – and soon for Mac too
It’s good to see WhatsApp making progress with its desktop offerings, and this ability to still receive messages – and, indeed, initiate video chats – without having your smartphone connected is a huge benefit. Even if the app is closed, as it is native software, you will still receive channeled notifications, so you don’t miss a thing.
The feedback we’ve seen so far online is that the new Windows client is smartly responsive and decently faster than the app it replaces, so it all feels like a considerable step forward for WhatsApp on the desktop.
We are also seeing development on the Mac front as WhatsApp has a native input app for macOS. However, this is still a work in progress, although Mac owners can participate in the beta if they wish. In the meantime, they are left with a desktop app that is still web-based (and of course the alternative possibility of just using WhatsApp in your browser).