WhatsApp Web and Desktop gives you all the features of the messaging application, with the convenience of a full-size keyboard and screen.
Because your WhatsApp account is linked to your phone number, it’s not too surprising that the account is considered first and foremost as a mobile application. While this is good for messaging while traveling, when you sit on a desktop or laptop, it can be very difficult to switch between devices when you bounce between work or surfing the web, and following your chats.
Well, you will be glad to hear that there are alternatives; You can use WhatsApp on your computer.
Actually, there is more than one way to do this, so you can try it and choose the most suitable for you. There are desktop applications available for Windows and macOS, but there is also a web-based version of WhatsApp if you don’t want to install this. WhatsApp Web is also a good choice if you are using Linux or Chrome OS and don’t have the luxury of a special application.
Whichever route you take, the experience is very similar, and not too far from the way the mobile version of WhatsApp works. So, let’s take a look and see how to get started with WhatsApp Web.
1. Download the desktop app
Before you begin, you need to make sure that your WhatsApp is installed and functioning properly on your iPhone or Android handset – you can retrieve the app from the App Store or Google Play if you don’t already have it. After this is done, you must download the desktop application for Windows or MacO, and you will find the download link on the WhatsApp website. WhatsApp Desktop can also be downloaded from the Microsoft Store or Mac App Store.
2. Connect to your phone
Whether you download the application from the store, or directly from WhatsApp, after you install and launch WhatsApp Desktop, you must be connected to your mobile – you do not enter the application the way you expect it to. When you first launch the application on your computer, you will be greeted by a QR code.
Launch WhatsApp on your mobile, tap the three dot settings menu and select WhatsApp Web. Point your phone’s camera to the QR code and you will enter your account.
3. WhatsApp on the web
You will see in the previous step that the menu options that you use to connect to your account are labeled WhatsApp Web rather than WhatsApp Desktop. This is because there are also websites that allow you to use WhatsApp in a desktop web browser.
This works very similar to a desktop application, and you can find it by going to https://web.whatsapp.com. The process of setting up and using the web and desktop versions of the chat tool is the same.
4. Finding contacts
As soon as you scan the QR code, WhatsApp Desktop (or WhatsApp Web) will synchronize with your phone and you will see the same contacts and messages as on your mobile. You can continue the chat that has already taken place by clicking on the name of your contact in the list on the left.
If you can’t see the person you’re looking for or you want to start a chat with someone new, type a name in the search bar and click on the results that appears.
5. Sending messages
With contacts selected, messaging is a simple matter of typing in the text box at the bottom right of the window and pressing Enter. If you mouse over a message, you can access a menu that allows you to forward, star or reply to a particular message.
You will feel faster typing with a computer keyboard than your phone’s touch screen, and you still have access to extras like emojis and GIFs. Click the smiley face button to the left of the message box and you will find a selection of emojis, GIFs, and stickers to decorate your message. You can browse what’s available, or use the search box to find something quickly.
6. Sending pictures and files
You are not limited to only the text in your message; WhatsApp Desktop also allows you to send files. Click the paperclip icon at the top right of the chat, and you can choose between different types of attachments. The ‘Photos & Videos’ icon allows you to add files stored on your hard drive, but you can also use the camera button to take a new shot. You also have the option to send documents (all other file types) or contact information from the attachment menu.
7. Group chats and audio messages
Just like on your cellphone, you can use group chat to talk with many people at once. Click the ‘+’ button at the top of your contact list, then click New Group. Click the name of everyone you want to include, click the green arrow and then assign a name and picture to the group.
8. Configuring app and profile settings
The three dot menu above your contact list is where you can access various settings. Click ‘Profile’ to change your profile picture, or change your name or other details.
You can also use the menu to access starred messages or archived chats and to change application settings. For example, you can change what the application has to tell you, change the background color for chat, and choose whether WhatsApp Desktop will launch when you turn on the computer – which is a good idea.