According to WABetaInfo and 9to5Google, WhatsApp is working on a means for users to transfer their chat histories from iOS to Android. The functionality could address one of the most vexing issues with Facebook’s messaging service: the fact that you can’t transfer a backup of your messages between iPhone and Android, only between phones running the same operating system. Since at least April, details of the in-development functionality have appeared in WhatsApp’s software.
According to screenshots released by WABetaInfo, WhatsApp’s iOS app now has a new “Move talks to Android” option. A second screenshot shows a screen that instructs users to leave their iPhone unlocked and WhatsApp open during the transfer. The majority of evidence thus far has pointed to an iOS to Android transfer feature, however WABetaInfo has previously indicated that the converse will be feasible as well.
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According to XDA Developers, WhatsApp’s new transfer capability could be included in a new Google “Switch to Android” iOS app in development. Switch to Android, similar to Apple’s “Move to iOS” software for converting customers from Android to iOS, may make it easier to switch to Google’s operating system. According to XDA Developers, code in Google’s app shows it might interface with WhatsApp’s unannounced transfer tool.
The migration option is being beta tested at the same time as WhatsApp’s multi-device support, which allows users to view their conversations from numerous devices without having to go via a single phone. WABetaInfo reports that WhatsApp is working on a means to move chat histories between different phone numbers, in addition to transferring them between platforms. At this time, no one knows when any of these features will be publicly available.