WhatsApp is dropping support for iOS 10 and iOS 11 and has silently made iOS 12 as the minimum software requirement for iPhone users. By leaving the older iOS versions behind, WhatsApp is finally discontinuing support for the models iPhone 5 and iPhone 5c — giving users a reason to upgrade to a newer iPhone. WhatsApp has started informing users on the iOS 10 and iOS 11 about the update. Dropping support for the older iOS versions essentially means that WhatsApp users would no longer be able to receive new updates as well as security fixes for the instant messaging app until they move to a new iOS version — or a newer hardware running iOS 12 or a later version.
A screenshot, which has been shared by some users and brought into focus by WABetaInfo, shows that WhatsApp will stop supporting iOS 10 and iOS 11 starting as early as October 24. The app is recommending users to update to a newer iOS version to continue to receive WhatsApp support.
Updating to a newer iOS release is not practically possible if you own an iPhone 5 or iPhone 5c. However, if you have an iPhone 5s or a later model, you can update to iOS 12 to retain WhatsApp’s support.
WhatsApp has updated its supported operating systems FAQ page on the Help Centre site to show that it is supporting and recommending users to have an iPhone running iOS 12 or a newer version. The App Store listing of WhatsApp has also been updated to reflect the change in software requirements. Details from the Web archives show that WhatsApp quietly upgraded iOS compatibility this month.
As a result of the update, users on iOS 10 and iOS 11 are no longer able to install WhatsApp from the App Store. In case you already have WhatsApp installed on the older iOS version, though, you are likely to receive support in terms of updates and security fixes until October.
This is not the first time when WhatsApp is leaving support for an older software version. It is, in fact, a general practice to make the popular messaging app available and supported only on the newer operating systems.
Last year, WhatsApp stopped supporting users on Android 4.0.4 and started recommending to upgrade to Android 4.1 or a later version to receive its support.