Bad news for WhatsApp users on Android: This important feature will be paid for –

Bad news for WhatsApp users on Android: This important function comes at a cost

A very large portion of WhatsApp for Android users used this feature for free. But from December you have to pay. We tell you how much and why.

Vacation photos, birthday wishes or the address of the best pizzeria in the area: WhatsApp saves many valuable memories. Until now, WhatsApp users with an Android smartphone didn’t have to worry about this because backing up all their data was free. But that will soon change. And if you don’t pay attention, you have to pay.

WhatsApp and Google have actually announced an important rule change regarding WhatsApp backups on Android smartphones. WhatsApp backups count towards the storage quota of the Google account. For WhatsApp users, this means that anyone who exceeds their storage limit must either free up storage space or pay for additional storage space on Google.

Google offers 15GB of free storage by default, but this storage is also used by other Google services such as Gmail, Google Photos or Google Drive. When large WhatsApp backups are added to emails, photos and documents, cloud space can quickly fill up. Luckily, additional storage on Google is relatively affordable. For example, 100 GB is available for just 1.99 euros per month. And if you buy the package for a whole year, you get two months free and therefore only pay 19.99 euros for twelve months.

This change will be implemented for beta users starting in December 2023 and then gradually for all users of WhatsApp on Android in the first half of 2024. A banner will appear on WhatsApp 30 days prior to this change. If you don’t want to save your chats to your Google account, you can still transfer your chats between Android devices using the WhatsApp chat transfer feature.

iPhone users already know this situation. In fact, with this change, WhatsApp and Google are aligning the backup rules with those of the iPhone, where WhatsApp backups are already deducted from the free storage quota in iCloud, which is otherwise limited to just 5 GB.