Timeline of WhatsApp

Last updated

The following is a timeline of WhatsApp , a proprietary cross-platform, encrypted, instant messaging client for smartphones. [1]

YearMonth and dateEvent typeDetails
2009February 24Company Jan Koum incorporates WhatsApp in USA. [2]
2009AugustProductWhatsApp 2.0 is released on the App Store for the iPhone. [3]
2009OctoberFunding Brian Acton persuades five ex-Yahoo! friends to invest $250,000 in seed funding, and is granted co-founder status. [2]
2009DecemberProductWhatsApp for the iPhone is updated to send photos. [2]
2010AugustProductWhatsApp support for Android OS is added. [4]
2011January 21Competition WeChat, a messenger app, is founded. [5] It eventually becomes very popular in China.
2011AprilFundingIn Series A round, WhatsApp founders agree to take $8 million from Sequoia Capital on top of their $250,000 seed funding, after months of negotiation with Sequoia partner Jim Goetz. [2]
2012January 6SecurityAn unknown hacker publishes a website that makes it possible to change the status of an arbitrary WhatsApp user, as long as the phone number was known. [6] [7]
2012AugustSecurityThe WhatsApp support staff announce that messages were encrypted in the "latest version" of the WhatsApp software for iOS and Android (but not BlackBerry, Windows Phone, and Symbian), without specifying the cryptographic method. [8]
2013FebruaryUserbaseWhatsApp's user base swells to about 200 million active users and its staff to 50. [2]
2013JulyFundingSequoia invests another $50 million in Series B round, valuing WhatsApp at $1.5 billion. [9]
2013July 16ProductWhatsApp goes free, with an annual subscription fee of $1 after the first year. [10] [11]
2013AugustCompetition Telegram, a cloud-based instant messaging service, launches. [12]
2013AugustProductWhatsApp introduces voice messaging. [13]
2014February 19Company Facebook, Inc. announces its acquisition of WhatsApp for US$19 billion, its largest acquisition to date. [14] Facebook pays $4 billion in cash, $12 billion in Facebook shares, and an additional $3 billion in restricted stock units granted to WhatsApp's founders. [15]
2014MarchSecuritySomeone discovers a vulnerability in WhatsApp encryption on the Android application that allows another app to access and read all of a user's chat conversations within it. [16]
2014NovemberProductWhatsApp introduces a feature named Read Receipts, which alerts senders when their messages are read by recipients. Within a week, WhatsApp introduces an update allowing users to disable this feature so that message recipients do not send acknowledgements. [17]
2015January 21ProductWhatsApp launches WhatsApp Web, a web client which can be used through a web browser by syncing with the mobile device's connection. [18]
2015January 21ProductWhatsApp announces its policy on cracking down on 3rd-party clients, including WhatsApp+. [19] Users would not be able to use WhatsApp's services at all until the third-party apps are uninstalled. [20]
2015MarchProduct Voice calls between two accounts are added. [21]
2015DecemberLegalWhatsApp is briefly shut down in Brazil after it refuses to place wiretaps on certain WhatsApp accounts. [22] It is shut down in Brazil again in May 2016 and in July 2016. [23]
2016January 18ProductJan Koum announces that WhatsApp will no longer charge its users a $1 annual subscription fee. [24] [25] There is still no clear plan for monetizing WhatsApp. [26]
2016MarchLegalDiego Dzodan, a Facebook executive, is arrested by Brazilian federal police after Facebook fails to turn over information from his WhatsApp messaging account into a judge's request for a drug trafficking investigation. [27]
2016March 2ProductWhatsApp introduces its document-sharing feature, initially allowing users to share PDF files with their contacts. [28]
2016April 5Product, SecurityWhatsApp and Open Whisper Systems announce that they finish adding end-to-end encryption to "every form of communication" on WhatsApp, and that users could now verify each other's keys. [29] [30] [31]
2016May 10ProductWhatsApp is introduced for both Windows and Mac operating systems. [32]
2016NovemberProduct Video calls between two accounts are added. [33]
2017September 5ProductWhatsApp starts external testing of an enterprise platform which enables companies to provide customer service to users at scale. [34] Airline KLM launches such a service. [35]
2018JulyProductGroup voice and video calls for up to four accounts [36] and labelling for forwarded messages are added [37]
2019JanuaryProductLimit on the forwarding of a message is lowered to five times [38]
2020AprilProductGroup calls can be up to 8 accounts [39] and 'highly forwarded' messages can be forwarded only to a single person [40]
2021AugustProductWhatsApp announces that users will be able to send photos and videos that will disappear after one view. [41]
2022MayProductWhatsApp adds the ability to react to messages with six preset emoji (thumbs up, heart, joined hands, tears of laughter, mouth open in surprise, crying face). Share file limit is increased from 100MB to 2GB, and the default maximum size of group chats is increased from 256 to 512. [42]
2022JulyProductWhatsApp adds the ability to react to messages with any emoji. [43]
2023MayProductWhatsApp announces users will be able to edit messages up to 15 minutes after being sent. [44]
2023JuneProductWhatsApp announces Channels, a feature that allows one-to-many communication for updates, and no defined limit for number of followers. Channels are not end-to-end encrypted, unlike messages in groups or chats. [45] [46]
2023AugustProductWhatsApp relaunches its app for Apple computers, adding audio and video group calling. [47]
2023OctoberProductOptimizing WhatsApp Channels for Business: Effective Strategies in the Digital Age [48]
2023OctoberProductWhatsApp Business API: Business Benefits [49]
2023SeptemberProductWhatsApp adds the ability for users to share photos and videos in high-definition. [50]

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