How to use WhatsApp on a PC

WhatsApp is a popular messaging app that many use on their smartphones or tablets. But did you know you can also use it on a PC? Here’s how.

With more than one billion users, WhatsApp Messenger is the most popular messaging application in the world.

WhatsApp allows you to send messages to contacts over an internet connection, rather than using your text allowance.

The free app is available for Android devices, iPhones and iPads, BlackBerry handsets, Windows Phone devices or Nokia phones. Find out how to download it.

However, while WhatsApp is most associated with smartphones and tablets, it is also possible to use the app from a PC. If you are using WhatsApp on your phone or tablet, you can use WhatsApp Web to make your existing WhatsApp account accessible on a PC.

This means that it is not a new WhatsApp account. Rather, by following the instructions below to use WhatsApp on a PC, WhatsApp on your PC becomes an extension of WhatsApp on your phone. All your WhatsApp activity will be synced between both devices.

[Read more: WhatsApp: What parents need to know about the instant messaging app]

How to use WhatsApp on your PC

Using WhatsApp on your PC is called WhatsApp Web. At the time of writing, this is only possible for phones using the following software platforms/operating systems: Android, iPhone 8.1 and later, Windows Phone 8.0 and 8.1, Nokia S60, Nokia S40 EVO, BlackBerry and BlackBerry 10.

Here’s what to do depending on your phone type:

Android

  1. Open web.whatsapp.com on your computer using the web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari or Edge are compatible)
  2. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  3. Open the Chats screen and select Menu and then WhatsApp Web
  4. There will be a QR code (looks like a scrambled barcode) on the computer screen. Scan this using your phoneHow to use WhatsApp on a PC
  5. WhatsApp will then open in your computer browser and you’ll be able to use it as to send messages as you would on your phone
  6. When you’ve finished your session, remember to log out. Click on the three-dot menu above the chats list on the left hand side of the screen
  7. Click on Log out at the bottom of the list  

iPhone

  1. Open web.whatsapp.com on your computer using the web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari or Edge are compatible)
  2. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  3. If you are in a chat, navigate back to the main Chats screen and select Settings from the bottom menu
  4. Then select WhatsApp WebHow to use WhatsApp on a PC
  5. There will be a QR code (looks like a scrambled barcode) on the computer screen. Scan this using your phone
  6. WhatsApp will then open in your computer browser and you’ll be able to use it as to send messages as you would on your phone
  7. When you’ve finished your session, remember to log out. Click on the three-dot menu above the chats list on the left hand side of the screen
  8. Click on Log out at the bottom of the list  

[Read more: WhatsApp: What do the ticks mean? Message delivery problems and read receipts explained]

Blackberry

  1. Open web.whatsapp.com on your computer using the web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari or Edge are compatible)
  2. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  3. Go to Chats, then Menu, then WhatsApp Web
  4. There will be a QR code (looks like a scrambled barcode) on the computer screen. Scan this using your phone
  5. WhatsApp will then open in your computer browser and you’ll be able to use it as to send messages as you would on your phone
  6. When you’ve finished your session, remember to log out. Click on the three-dot menu above the chats list on the left hand side of the screen
  7. Click on Log out at the bottom of the list  

Windows Phone

  1. Open web.whatsapp.com on your computer using the web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Opera, Safari or Edge are compatible)
  2. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  3. Go to Menu, then WhatsApp Web
  4. There will be a QR code (looks like a scrambled barcode) on the computer screen. Scan this using your phone
  5. WhatsApp will then open in your computer browser and you’ll be able to use it as to send messages as you would on your phone
  6. When you’ve finished your session, remember to log out. Click on the three-dot menu above the chats list on the left hand side of the screen
  7. Click on Log out at the bottom of the list  

Turning on desktop notifications

After you have launched the WhatsApp interface on your PC for the first time, you will have the option of turning on desktop notifications. This option will be highlighted in blue above your chat list.

If you want to turn on desktop notifications:

  1. Click Turn on desktop notifications
  2. A box will pop up asking you to allow notifications. Click Allow

Additional way to log out

If you’ve forgotten to log out from your WhatsApp session on your computer, you can also log out from your phone.

Android

  1. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  2. Open the Chats screen and select Menu and then WhatsApp Web
  3. Here you can view any computers you are logged in on and you can log out from a session of your choice

iPhone

  1. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  2. If you are in a chat, navigate back to the main Chats screen and select Settings from the bottom menu
  3. Then select WhatsApp Web
  4. Here you can view any computers you are logged in on and you can log out from a session of your choice

Blackberry

  1. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  2. Go to Chats, then Menu, then WhatsApp Web
  3. Here you can view any computers you are logged in on and you can log out from a session of your choice

Windows Phone

  1. Open the WhatsApp app on your phone by tapping on it
  2. Go to Menu, then WhatsApp Web
  3. Here you can view any computers you are logged in on and you can log out from a session of your choice

Read more: What's the difference between WhatsApp and texting?

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