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WhatsApp announces chat transfer between iOS and Android, with a catch

Transfer only to Samsung devices via a lightning to USB cable, for now


Twelve years since WhatsApp's release, the company has finally allowed chats to be transferred between Android and iOS apps.

Until now, if you had a WhatsApp account and decided to change phones from Android to iOS or vice versa, you would not have been able to transfer your chats with it--officially. The reason was that Android backs up chats to Google Drive while iOS did so to iCloud--the two cloud-based storages being incompatible with each other.

While third-party apps allowed for this transfer, due to them being unofficial, they raised a security issue.

Now, WhatsApp has enabled this cross-platform functionality via Samsung's Smart Switch transfer tool. The new tool was revealed at Samsung's Galaxy Unpacked event, and will debut on Samsung's newest Galaxy foldable devices, with a broader Android release later. The app will allow chats to be transferred from an iOS device to a Samsung one via a Lightning to USB-C cable (most of which retail for over Rs 1,400 online).

However, iOS users wanting to transfer data from an Android will need to wait, though a WhatsApp spokesperson told TechCrunch they were working to bring this feature to users worldwide.

The transfer currently only works with a single backup file.

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