The following is a timeline of WhatsApp, a proprietary cross-platform, encrypted, instant messaging client for smartphones.[1]

Year Month and date Event type Details
2009 February 24 Company Jan Koum incorporates WhatsApp in USA.[2]
2009 August Product WhatsApp 2.0 is released on the App Store for the iPhone.[3]
2009 October Funding Brian Acton persuades five ex-Yahoo! friends to invest $250,000 in seed funding, and is granted co-founder status.[2]
2009 December Product WhatsApp for the iPhone is updated to send photos.[2]
2010 August Product WhatsApp support for Android OS is added.[4]
2011 January 21 Competition WeChat, a messenger app, is founded.[5] It eventually becomes very popular in China.
2011 April Funding In Series A round, WhatsApp Statis founders agree to take $8 million from Sequoia Capital on top of their $250,000 seed funding, after months of negotiation with Sequoia partner Jim Goetz.[2]
2012 January 6 Security An unknown hacker publishes a website that makes it possible to change the status of an arbitrary WhatsApp user, as long as the phone number was known.[6][7]
2012 August Security The WhatsApp support staff announce that messages were encrypted in the "latest version" of the WhatsApp software for iOS and Android (but not BlackBerry, Windows Phone, and Symbian), without specifying the cryptographic method.[8]
2013 February Userbase WhatsApp's user base swells to about 200 million active users and its staff to 50.[2]
2013 July Funding Sequoia invests another $50 million in Series B round, valuing WhatsApp at $1.5 billion.[9]
2013 July 16 Product WhatsApp goes free, with an annual subscription fee of $1 after the first year.[10][11]
2013 August Competition Telegram, a cloud-based instant messaging service, launches.[12]
2013 August Product WhatsApp introduces voice messaging.[13]
2014 February 19 Company Facebook, Inc. announces its acquisition of WhatsApp for US$19 billion, its largest acquisition to date.[14] Facebook pays $4 billion in cash, $12 billion in Facebook shares, and an additional $3 billion in restricted stock units granted to WhatsApp's founders.[15]
2014 March Security Someone discovers a vulnerability in WhatsApp encryption on the Android application that allows another app to access and read all of a user's chat conversations within it.[16]
2014 November Product WhatsApp introduces a feature named Read Receipts, which alerts senders when their messages are read by recipients. Within a week, WhatsApp introduces an update allowing users to disable this feature so that message recipients do not send acknowledgements.[17]
2015 January 21 Product WhatsApp launches WhatsApp Web, a web client which can be used through a web browser by syncing with the mobile device's connection.[18]
2015 January 21 Product WhatsApp announces its policy on cracking down on 3rd-party clients, including WhatsApp+.[19] Users would not be able to use WhatsApp's services at all until the third-party apps are uninstalled.[20]
2015 March Product Voice calls between two accounts are added.[21]
2015 December Legal WhatsApp is briefly shut down in Brazil after it refuses to place wiretaps on certain WhatsApp accounts.[22] It is shut down in Brazil again in May 2016 and in July 2016.[23]
2016 January 18 Product Jan Koum announces that WhatsApp will no longer charge its users a $1 annual subscription fee.[24][25] There is still no clear plan for monetizing WhatsApp.[26]
2016 March Legal Diego Dzodan, a Facebook executive, is arrested by Brazilian federal police after Facebook fails to turn over information from his WhatsApp messaging account into a judge's request for a drug trafficking investigation.[27]
2016 March 2 Product WhatsApp introduces its document-sharing feature, initially allowing users to share PDF files with their contacts.[28]
2016 April 5 Product, Security WhatsApp and Open Whisper Systems announce that they finish adding end-to-end encryption to "every form of communication" on WhatsApp, and that users could now verify each other's keys.[29][30][31]
2016 May 10 Product WhatsApp is introduced for both Windows and Mac operating systems.[32]
2016 November Product Video calls between two accounts are added.[33]
2017 September 5 Product WhatsApp starts external testing of an enterprise platform which enables companies to provide customer service to users at scale.[34] Airline KLM launches such a service.[35]
2018 July Product Group voice and video calls for up to four accounts[36] and labelling for forwarded messages are added[37]
2019 January Product Limit on the forwarding of a message is lowered to five times[38]
2020 April Product Group calls can be up to 8 accounts[39] and 'highly forwarded' messages can be forwarded only to a single person[40]
2021 August Product WhatsApp announces that users will be able to send photos and videos that will disappear after one view.[41]
2022 May Product WhatsApp adds the ability to react to messages with six preset emoji (thumbs up, heart, joined hands, tears of laughter, mouth open in surprise, crying face). Share file limit is increased from 100MB to 2GB, and the default maximum size of group chats is increased from 256 to 512.[42]
2022 July Product WhatsApp adds the ability to react to messages with any emoji.[43]
2023 May Product WhatsApp announces users will be able to edit messages up to 15 minutes after being sent.[44]
2023 June Product WhatsApp announces Channels, a feature that allows one-to-many communication for updates, and no defined limit for number of followers. Channels are not end-to-end encrypted, unlike messages in groups or chats. [45][46]
2023 August Product WhatsApp relaunches its app for Apple computers, adding audio and video group calling.[47]
2023 September Product WhatsApp adds the ability for users to share photos and videos in high-definition.[48]

References

  1. ^ Metz, Cade (5 April 2016). "Forget Apple vs. the FBI: WhatsApp Just Switched on Encryption for a Billion People". Wired. Condé Nast. Retrieved 13 May 2016.
  2. ^ a b c d e Olsen, Parmy (February 2, 2014). "Exclusive: The Rags-To-Riches Tale Of How Jan Koum Built WhatsApp Into Facebook's New $19 Billion Baby". Forbes. Retrieved January 14, 2015.
  3. ^ "WhatsApp 2.0 is submitted - WhatsApp Blog". Retrieved June 5, 2016.
  4. ^ "Three-quarters of WhatsApp users are on Android, 22% on iOS (study)". Venturebeat.com. 27 August 2015. Retrieved June 5, 2016.
  5. ^ "5 years of WeChat". Retrieved June 5, 2016.
  6. ^ Schellevis, Joost (January 12, 2012). "What's app status: van Anderen os nog speeds te wijzigen" (in Dutch). Tweakers. Retrieved January 12, 2012.
  7. ^ rvdm (January 12, 2012). "How What's app net works". Wire trip. Archived from the original on November 5, 2013. Retrieved April 7, 2013.
  8. ^ "Are my messages secure?". WhatsApp (FAQ). Zendesk. August 15, 2012. Retrieved January 29, 2013.
  9. ^ "PrivCo". Privco.com. Retrieved May 30, 2016.
  10. ^ "The Granddaddy Of Messaging Apps, WhatsApp, Finally Goes For A Subscription Model on iOS". Techcrunch.com. 17 July 2013. Retrieved June 8, 2016.
  11. ^ "WhatsApp, the Internet Messenger, to Become Free". The New York Times. 18 January 2016. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  12. ^ "Russia's Zuckerberg launches Telegram, a new instant messenger service". Reuters.com. 30 August 2013. Retrieved June 5, 2016.
  13. ^ "Voice Messaging Comes To Whatsapp". Techcrunch.com. 7 August 2013. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  14. ^ "WhatsApp Was Valued At ~$1.5B In Final Round Before Sale". Techcrunch. 22 February 2014. Retrieved February 22, 2014.
  15. ^ Albergotti, Reed; MacMillan, Douglas; Rusli, Evelyn M. (19 February 2014). "Facebook to Buy WhatsApp for $19 Billion". The Wall Street Journal. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  16. ^ "Hole In WhatsApp For Android Lets Hackers Steal Your Conversations". Techcrunch.com. 12 March 2014. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  17. ^ "Whatsapp now lets you disable Read notifications". November 15, 2014.
  18. ^ "WhatsApp Web". January 21, 2015.
  19. ^ "(Updated) WhatsApp begins crackdown on unlicensed 3rd party clients". Androidauthority.com. 21 January 2015. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  20. ^ "WhatsApp Says It's Not "Permanently" Banning Users From Its Service, Just Blocking Third-Party Clients". Techcrunch.com. 6 March 2015. Retrieved June 6, 2016.
  21. ^ WhatsApp finally adds voice calls for all Android users, iOS coming soon - James Vincent, The Verge, 31 March 2015
  22. ^ "Brazil Restores WhatsApp Service After Brief Blockade Over Wiretap Request". The New York Times. December 17, 2015. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  23. ^ "WhatsApp Is Briefly Shut Down in Brazil for a Third Time". The New York Times. July 19, 2016. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  24. ^ Fried, Ina (January 18, 2016). "Facebook's Whatsapp is Now Free". Re Code. Vox Media, Inc. Retrieved January 18, 2016.
  25. ^ "Whatsapp to Drop Subscription Fee". Wall Street Journal. Dow Jones & Company, Inc. January 18, 2016. Retrieved January 18, 2016.
  26. ^ "No Subscription Charges For WhatsApp: Does Facebook Have A Monetization Strategy In Place?". Forbes. Retrieved May 30, 2016.
  27. ^ "Brazil Arrests Facebook Executive in WhatsApp Data Access Case". The New York Times. March 1, 2016. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  28. ^ "WhatsApp adds support for document sharing, but only PDFs at launch". TechCrunch. March 2, 2016. Retrieved March 2, 2016.
  29. ^ Metz, Cade (April 5, 2016). "Forget Apple vs. the FBI: WhatsApp Just Switched on Encryption for a Billion People". Wired. Condé Nast. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  30. ^ Lomas, Natasha (April 5, 2016). "WhatsApp completes end-to-end encryption rollout". TechCrunch. AOL Inc. Retrieved April 5, 2016.
  31. ^ "WhatsApp Introduces End-to-End Encryption". The New York Times. April 5, 2016. Retrieved August 28, 2016.
  32. ^ "Introducing WhatsApp's desktop app", WhatsApp Blog, 10 May 2016, retrieved 11 May 2016
  33. ^ WhatsApp Is Now Rolling Out Video Calling For iPhone, Android And Windows Phone - Amit Chowdhry, 15 November 2016
  34. ^ "Building for People, and Now Businesses". WhatsApp.com.
  35. ^ "KLM first airline with verified WhatsApp business account". KLM first airline with verified WhatsApp business account. Retrieved 21 December 2018.
  36. ^ WhatsApp launches four-person group video calling - Jon Fingas, Engadget, 30 July 2018
  37. ^ Wodinsky, Shoshana (2018-07-10). "WhatsApp will now label forwarded messages". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-05-23.
  38. ^ Kastrenakes, Jacob (2019-01-21). "WhatsApp limits message forwarding in fight against misinformation". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-07-27.
  39. ^ Now video chat with more than 4 people on WhatsApp, here is how - Ankita Chakravarti, India Today, 22 April 2020
  40. ^ Newton, Casey (2020-04-07). "WhatsApp puts new limits on the forwarding of viral messages". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-07-27.
  41. ^ "WhatsApp photos and videos can now disappear after a single viewing". TechCrunch. 3 August 2021.
  42. ^ Clark, Mitchell (2022-05-05). "WhatsApp rolls out emoji reactions, bigger files, and massive groups". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-05-23.
  43. ^ Mehta, Ivan (2022-07-11). "WhatsApp will now let you use any emoji as a reaction". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2023-05-23.
  44. ^ "Now you can edit your WhatsApp messages". WhatsApp.com. Retrieved 2023-07-06.
  45. ^ "Introducing WhatsApp Channels. A Private Way to Follow What Matters". WhatsApp.com. Retrieved 2023-07-07.
  46. ^ Khanna, Prakhar. "WhatsApp Channels: Everything You Need To Know". Forbes. Retrieved 2023-11-11.
  47. ^ Davis, Wes (2023-08-29). "The new WhatsApp for Mac adds video and audio group calling". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-11-11.
  48. ^ Chin, Monica (2023-09-06). "WhatsApp now supports HD photos and video". The Verge. Retrieved 2023-11-11.