WhatsApp will not support older phones from 1 November. If ever there was a reason to buy a new phone, this is it. Simply put, Android users with an operating system (OS) of 4.0.4 or earlier or iPhone users with iOS 9 or earlier will not support the new WhatsApp security and other features.
Not that this is unexpected. Android 4 launched in late 2011 and ran to June 2014 – it would be amazing if any of these devices were still working.
Older iPhones are generally only supported for four OS upgrades, so handsets before iPhone 7 could be stuck on iOS 9 or earlier.
What to do if you are going to be affected
What to do asap because you can’t do this after 1 November:
You can back up your WhatsApp data, photos and chat history.
No, it is not to drive new phone sales. I am surprised that WhatsApp can support Android 6 (Vulnerability List) or iOS9 (Vulnerability List). These operating systems are hopelessly outdated and highly insecure, lacking even the most fundamental protection against malware. In other words, if you use these, you are a target for hackers.
WhatsApp and many more coming apps to need to use the latest API’s (application programming interfaces) provided by Apple (four OS version support) and Google Android (Support from Oreo 8.1 onwards), and as each year ticks over, the version support moves to the following number.
Old faithful Windows 10, launched in 2015, is being replaced by Windows 11 on 5 October 2021, and it can only support PCs from Intel 8th Generation circa 2017 with TPM security chips.
macOS is a little more complex. With the replacement of Intel CPUs with Apple’s M series CPUs, we will eventually see Intel upgrade support phased out. At the moment, macOS support is for 2017 models or later; however, there are a few model exceptions back to 2014.