Since the beginning of 2016, WhatsApp protects messages and conversations sent within its app with end-to-end encryption. This means that no one other than the sender and receiver of the messages can read their content – not even Meta can read or spy on your conversations.
Despite the ubiquity of WhatsApp — more than 2 billion people use it every month — securely moving your encrypted chats and photos to different platforms or apps has always been a challenge. Transferring your WhatsApp chats from Android to iPhone and from iPhone to Android has historically been limited to third-party apps. These apps are often cumbersome and don’t necessarily protect your data at the level provided by the WhatsApp ecosystem.
But in recent months, WhatsApp has made it possible to officially switch between iPhone and Android (and vice versa), rolling out a process for securely moving data between operating systems, and working with phone makers to make that transition possible.
If you’re tired of Meta’s ecosystem, you can also move your groups and some chat data to other messaging apps. Here’s how to move all your WhatsApp chats and backups.
Android to iPhone
There are several steps required to transfer your WhatsApp account from Android to iPhone. But you should be able to take most of your information with you: your profile picture, personal and group chats, history, photos, videos, and settings can all jump from one device to another. However, WhatsApp says your call log and display name cannot be moved.
Much of the work of moving WhatsApp data takes place before you make the transition. To move between devices, you need to make sure the phone number is the same on each device. Before starting this process, make sure you have the most recently updated version of WhatsApp installed on your Android phone. You also need to be running at least Android 5 on the device you’re migrating to and iOS 15.5 on the iPhone you’re migrating to. (The iPhone needs to be a new device or recently reset to factory settings.)
Next, download and install the “Move to iOS” app from Google’s Play Store – this Apple-owned app will do all the heavy lifting. When you’re ready to migrate your data, plug both devices into power and connect both phones to the same Wi-Fi network. (If you don’t have a Wi-Fi network, you can use a hotspot to connect your Android phone to your iPhone.)
When both phones are on the same network, open the “Move to iOS” app on the Android phone and follow the instructions to connect the two phones. Then select WhatsApp as the data source you want to transfer from, and the app will have your chats ready for transfer – a final prompt will confirm that you want to switch.
This process will log you out of WhatsApp on your Android phone, and you’ll need to download the app on the iPhone you’re transferring to. When you first use WhatsApp on this iPhone, it will ask you to use the same number as on your Android device and prompt you to complete the transfer process. After the process is complete, if you want to get rid of your old phone, make sure to do a factory reset and wipe all data.
iPhone to Android
From October 2021, you can transfer WhatsApp chat history from iPhone to Android device. This transfer includes your photos, messages, voice messages, and group conversations.
The compatibility was initially rolled out for Samsung phones, but has since expanded to include Google Pixel phones and all devices running Android 12. To do this, you’ll need a USB-C to Lightning cable to physically connect the two devices, Google explained. “When prompted to set up a new Android device, scan the QR code on your iPhone to launch WhatsApp,” the company said in a blog post.Alternatively, you can visit in WhatsApp set up > to chat with > Move chat to Android and follow the transfer prompts.