iOS 12 is out, and just days later it is being learnt that WhatsApp won't work on iOS versions prior to iOS 7.1.2. While the company has not updated its end-of-support blog post since June this year, when it announced iOS 7 and earlier versions will not be supported from February 1, 2020, it has since published a new FAQ section detailing the latest changes to version support. Users on iOS 7.1.2 - the last version of iOS 7 - will also have some limitations to how they can use the app, the company detailed, saying only users on versions iOS 8 and above will have full functionality for now.
To be specific, the Facebook-owned messaging service on its new FAQ section for supported iPhone devices says that "WhatsApp for iPhone requires iOS 8 or later." It adds that if users have WhatsApp active on devices running iOS 7.1.2, they will be able to use the app until February 1, 2020, however, they will not be able to create new accounts or reverify existing accounts. It reiterates that WhatsApp is not supported on iOS 6 and older versions.
The move won't affect too many users, except those with devices that received no updates after iOS 7.1.2 - specifically, the iPhone 4, released back in 2010. As WhatsApp explains, these users will no longer be able to add new accounts, or reverify existing accounts, but otherwise, if the app is already active on their device, it will work. The model prior to that, the iPhone 3GS (released back in 2009) didn't receive an update after iOS 6.1.6 (released in February 2014), and is no longer supported by WhatsApp. The same is the case of the iPhone 3G (released back in 2008) and the original iPhone (released back in 2007). The iPhone 4S (released in 2011), which received iOS 8.4.1 (released in October 2015) as its last update, still retains full functionality, despite being 7 years old. iOS 7.1.2 was released back in July 2014.
iOS 12, the latest version of Apple's mobile operating system that was released on September 17, is compatible with iPhone 5S (released in 2013) and newer models only. As per Apple's developer page, where iOS adoption figures were last updated on September 3, 85 percent of active devices are running iOS 11, while 10 percent are running iOS 10, and 5 percent are running older versions. This would imply that while a minority, users running versions earlier than iOS 10 may still number in the millions.