According to a report from Facebook-owned instant messaging (IM) service, WhatsApp will last its support for Android 2.3.7 Gingerbread version and other older versions until February 1, 2020. The number of WhatsApp users on Android 2.3.7 Gingerbread and older versions of the Android OS still takes a significant percentage of the company. That explains for how those builds account for two percentages of all currently active Android devices in the world, regarding to a latest distribution chart of the Alphabet-owned company earlier this month.
While WhatsApp promises to continue developing its communications service for relatively old Android versions, Facebook’s subsidiary is going to make its users update after Google discontinues the Android Market support for legacy smartphones and tablets in nine days. Although that movement does not affect users on Froyo and Gingerbread, Google is expected to cut them off in the near future, which means WhatsApp will need to find out an alternative distribution method for this current portion of its user base. According to some rumors, WhatsApp is only planning to continue the server-side development for the legacy Android builds and just roll out the major features in the next four and a half years, though the clarification about rumors has yet been proved.
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WhatsApp has changed in a radical manner for eight years, especially after the Facebook’s purchase of is service in early 2014 cost $19 billion. Despite still primarily foxusing on messaging, WhatsApp has recently released a variety of new features, which was inspired by social networks and other online platforms, in an effort to provide for the users an fully entire ecosystem of services. Even these features are not necessarily useful to everyone, it allows the company to monetize the offers in a more efficient manner to see how the streamlined IM apps cannot offer a great return.