Own an Old iPhone or Samsung Smartphone? WhatsApp Might Stop Working for You

Many users are hesitant to let go of their old smartphones, but there are many factors that can make that a bad decision with all things having been considered and taken into account. Most major smartphone manufacturers use planned obsolescence whereby they render older models obsolete. Such a practice is prevalent because of the fact that this is the sort of thing that could potentially end up inducing more sales. However, it can also force users to spend money that they don’t have.

With all of that having been said and now out of the way, it is important to note that a new update from WhatsApp might add to the woes of old smartphone users. A number of these users have old phones precisely because they only need to use lightweight apps like WhatsApp. In spite of the fact that this is the case, it seems like WhatsApp will no longer be working for older phone models starting from the 31st of December.

Overall, it appears that dozens of phone models will be included in this list. That includes iPhones that are older than the iPhone 6 (such as iPhone 5 and iPhone 5c), Samsung Galaxy phones released prior to 2013 (including Ace 2, Core, S2, S3 mini, Trend II, Trend Lite and Xcover 2), as well as older models for Huawei Ascend (including Mate, G740, D1, D2 and P1), Sony (such Xperia Arc S and Xperia Neo L) as well as LG Optimus (including F3, F3Q, F5 to F7, L2 to L5 Dual).

WhatsApp is justifying this change by citing security concerns. The older a phone model is, the harder it will be to send patches and security updates to the device. That can put all WhatsApp users at risk, since a single weak link can make the whole system less safe than might have been the case otherwise.

This comes after WhatsApp recently suspended support for phones that use iOS 11 or older back in October. It is part of a continuing trend in the tech industry to make it harder for users to hold onto their older phones. Security issues are definitely a part of this trend, but chances are that these companies want users to buy newer phones in larger quantities. Sustainable packaging is making the consumer life cycle longer than ever, so companies will do what they can to find new and repeat buyers.

Read next: Meta is adding new security features to Whatsapp for logging in from a new device
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