WhatsApp, the number one mobile instant messaging application for the most popular mobile operating system, is one of the most updated apps.
The Facebook-owned social networking bigwig is currently being used by over a billion users across the globe and a lot has to be done to give this mammoth crowd an exceptional messaging experience. The latest beta release has been rolled out for Android with build number 2.16.130 and it has more than just performance improvements.
WhatsApp Inc. has made releasing beta versions with no changes or minimal if there is any a tradition; most releases are normally meant for bug fixing. Several features have been added to the service in the recent past including voicemail and Olympic themed emojis.
WhatsApp 2.16.130 for Android smartphones comes with an additional feature, Multiple Forwarding. The new feature allows instant sharing and forwarding a message to several contacts. Besides, two additional national flags for Wales and Scotland have been added. The new edition weighs 55KB more than the previous release with over 430 modified files.
The APK file also features three new icons, of which two of them are the new flags and a tiny icon for backups. The new installation file also enhances system functionality and takes care of bugs in the previous version but may come along with new bugs, which is not unusual for WhatsApp beta releases. As already seen in earlier beta releases, the new version likely to experience bugs and others issues (in case you experience any abnormality, report to the WhatsApp developers). Alternatively, you can always go back to the Play Store for a stable WhatsApp.
How to download and install the updated WhatsApp version
There are two ways to get your hand on the new release. First, you can download the APK file from trusted third party sites like the APK Mirror or APK Police. Being a third party app make sure you enable ‘Unknown Sources’ on your Android device Settings menu before installing the app, or else it will be blocked by your Android system.
If not, the updated version is now available for download directly from the Play Store for those already enrolled in WhatsApp BETA testing program. Non-testers can visit the Google Play Store web page to join the program which is open for all users. Once on the page, hit the ‘BECOME A TESTER’ icon then head to the official Android store, then type WhatsApp 2.16.130 on the search bar. Once the search is complete you can directly install the app.
For Android users without WhatsApp installed on their device, which is rarely the case, remember the messenger supports all Android smartphones running on the OS version 2.1 and higher. WhatsApp APK file is relatively lighter and it weighs between 24 and 28MB. The messaging platform, apart from the primary use of sending text messages, offers a myriad of fascinating functionalities which include but not limited to voice calling, document sharing, text formatting, video and image sharing and voice mail services.