WhatsApp pulled from the Windows Phone Store [Update]

The popular instant messaging program WhatsApp was pulled from the Windows Phone Store today. Neither WhatsApp nor Microsoft have yet given any indication for the reasons behind its removalSearching for the app on both Windows Phone 8 and 8.1 devices yields no results and, while the listing is still visible on the Windows Phone Store website, a message declares that "This app is no longer published", with no means to install the app to your handset.

The removal, first noted earlier today by Windows Phone Central, appears to be confined to Microsoft's mobile OS, as download links in rival app stores are still working normally. Windows Phone is still listed as a supported platform on the WhatsApp site too.

Existing users don't need to worry too much, as the app is still functioning as normal on those devices with it installed. The app is known to be very buggy when used on Windows Phone 8.1 - which is still technically a 'developer preview' - so it is possible that it was removed ahead of WP8.1's official rollout on June 24th.

With no explanation yet forthcoming, and no hint of when it might return to the Store, Windows Phone users who wish to install the app are simply unable to do so. We'll update this article as we learn more or if WhatsApp or Microsoft make a statement regarding the cause of its removal.

Update: Spanish website Windows Phone Apps en Espagnol has posted a screenshot of an email sent by WhatsApp to a registered member of the WhatsApp for Windows Phone beta program. It describes how the app has been pulled from the store for a few hours to fix effectively a multitude of found bugs and comes from a James M. Kinsley of the WhatsApp team.

Source: Windows Phone Central | Image via ShutterStock

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This sounds like a major security flaw, usually with a functional app, you leave it till you have the update. That our there server's updated and the client would no longer talk until it's updated and they missed there deadline.

That supposed email from supposedly a WhatsApp developer is the most unprofessional email ever. The grammar is atrocious and any legitimate business wouldn't send out such error filled emails.

I have no issues with the current Whatsapp whatsoever. I'm really curious when and if an updated version is published to the store.

it has very minor issues with 8.1, not enough to pull the app completely, it works fine on my 1520 with the dev preview. and no issues on wp8, so a pretty gay move by WhatsApp at a time when a bunch of new phones are being released across Europe.

All we have is a screenshot of an email which does not show the sender (what an amazing coincidence) and is written in lousy english.

I can't believe Neowin even published this load of crap.

With the shoddy work they do on these apps (specially whatsapp & viber) I will never install them on any of my devices and would advice the same to other users as well.

Leaking MAC .. IMIE .. location info ... sad cryptography and distribution of malware! NO THANK YOU!

The app still works fine... it's just people who don't have it can't download it now.

Also - It could be a sign the new version that's been in beta quite some time is finally ready to be released! :D

People actually defending its removal... I hope every potential developer it tries to gets sees these comments.

I wouldn't want to continue developing for people of this attitude either.

Yeah. I mean how dare they. They should welcome #### applications with open arms.

If the application was actually a good piece of software, maybe people would be more upset at its removal. Just a thought.

It's just the right thing to do at the moment. If it's buggy and crashes on Windows Phone 8.1, you have to pull it temporarily. If they don't, they'll end up with thousands of bad reviews in the store... and those don't disappear.

Possibly. The new version that has been in closed beta for quite some time brings a ton of new features is supposed to be MUCH better.

BUT - They didn't need to pull the app though... so who knows. Maybe they want to cheat the reviews and list the new version as a new app lol

Precisely! It would be in their interest to launch a spanking new whatsapp without all the problems that beset the old one. However as crappy as it is, some folks still depend on it, so the sooner they bring it back the better I guess.

The official one has been pulled from the windows store, but diving in more, the beta version is still listed in the store but only available to the closed beta group.

One less dumb social app to care about.

OK lol, nearly kidding but still I hate these social thingies, starting with facebook on top.

Use the one that comes with your phone. You know SMS's.

Why people get 3rd party apps for features that are already there I will never know.

necrosis said,
Use the one that comes with your phone. You know SMS's.

Why people get 3rd party apps for features that are already there I will never know.

Yeah sure! I'll text all my friends overseas using SMS instead! You know, instead of using Whatsapp for free, over Wifi, in my room with no service.

You know why people use 3rd party apps? Because they're often better.

necrosis said,
Use the one that comes with your phone. You know SMS's.

Why people get 3rd party apps for features that are already there I will never know.

Don't be offended but this is a statement rooted in ignorance. For sending pictures, videos and messages to my many friends abroad, Whatsapp is a great tool. It would be great to use it from a PC like Viber though.

Wam7 said,
Don't be offended but this is a statement rooted in ignorance. For sending pictures, videos and messages to my many friends abroad, Whatsapp is a great tool. It would be great to use it from a PC like Viber though.

I switched to telegram

necrosis said,
Use the one that comes with your phone. You know SMS's.

Why people get 3rd party apps for features that are already there I will never know.

Despite having unlimited data and 5000 texts a months it still costs me 25p to send an MMS... yet on WhatsApp i could send a 1000's of photos / videos and it would still only cost me 69p a year.

Likewise delivery reports are free, and messaging someone down the street is the same as messaging someone at the other side of the world.

WhatsApp also works over Wi-fi, yesterday for example i went to a BBQ and had no network coverage, however i could still send an important message using Wi-Fi.

Not everyone has free SMSs, for example in Spain the majority of contracts charge at least €0.10 and more for SMSs.

Everyone here uses Whatsapp to send messages, without exception. If you don't have it you won't be able to message your friends as they won't pay to reply to a SMS message, and it's used every day by work colleagues.

Mind you, I don't know a single person who has bought a Windows Phone here, it's been an absolute flop in this country, even the shops have given up advertising them because no one wants one.

This is a common colocation in British English. It is, fairly enough, redundant as there are not other types of colleague but in UK English we commonly use this colocation. It's just a quirk of the language.

In latin languages they use the equivalent of 'colleague' to describe multiple relationships - for workmates, schoolmates and flatmates so it is inherited from this, e.g. in Spanish and other similar languages. This is where it comes from.

Its been pretty Evident that Facebook and many of its developers have strong ties to Google.. And Facebook prefers to develop on the Android platform.

I won't be too surprised if they stop supporting WindowsPhone
http://static2.businessinsider...002-960/android-posters.jpg

So ya never know! whats really troublesome is that a handful of apps can make or break and entire smartphone platform these days. so much for the Web as a platform! which only Mozilla and Microsoft seem to be pushing these days ironic

Edited by dingl_, May 17 2014, 8:19pm :

dingl_ said,
Its been pretty Evident that Facebook and many of its developers have strong ties to Google.. And Facebook prefers to develop on the Android platform.

I won't be too surprised if they stop supporting WindowsPhone
http://static2.businessinsider...002-960/android-posters.jpg

So ya never know! whats really troublesome is that a handful of apps can make or break and entire smartphone platform these days. so much for the Web as a platform! which only Mozilla and Microsoft seem to be pushing these days ironic

Umm. It is also removed from PlayStore...

If you think Facebook cares about Developing apps on the Windows platform you're only diluting yourself. that tiny investment from Microsoft helps with access to Fb data and integration, nothing more really

It also lets Microsoft beg Facebook for an update now and again, no guarantees

Look at the state of the official Instagram app, the launch of that app showed their commitment to Windowsphone

dingl_ said,
Its been pretty Evident that Facebook and many of its developers have strong ties to Google.. And Facebook prefers to develop on the Android platform.

I won't be too surprised if they stop supporting WindowsPhone
http://static2.businessinsider...002-960/android-posters.jpg

So ya never know! whats really troublesome is that a handful of apps can make or break and entire smartphone platform these days. so much for the Web as a platform! which only Mozilla and Microsoft seem to be pushing these days ironic

I wouldn't say that, I'm sure this is either caused by error or perhaps because they are momentarily withholding the app because of compatibility issues, Whatsapp has been one of the most routinely developed apps for Windows Phone for quite sometime.

I only know 1 person who uses Whatsapp instead of Viber. Also Whatsapp is not as "cross platform" as Viber - you can't run Whatsapp on your PC for example.

Whatsapp also isn't free after 12 months. Lets face it Whatsapp is primarily developed for iPhone users, and they are welcome to it.

dvb2000 said,
I only know 1 person who uses Whatsapp instead of Viber. Also Whatsapp is not as "cross platform" as Viber - you can't run Whatsapp on your PC for example.

Whatsapp also isn't free after 12 months. Lets face it Whatsapp is primarily developed for iPhone users, and they are welcome to it.

Personal experiences differ. I don't know a single person who uses Viber, yet almost everyone I know uses Whatsapp. Even the 30-40 year olds I work with use it. Only about 1/3 of the people I work with have iPhone too.

dvb2000 said,
I only know 1 person who uses Whatsapp instead of Viber. Also Whatsapp is not as "cross platform" as Viber - you can't run Whatsapp on your PC for example.

Whatsapp also isn't free after 12 months. Lets face it Whatsapp is primarily developed for iPhone users, and they are welcome to it.

Most of my friends are using both Viber and WhatsApp concurrently.

While WhatsApp is not cross platform, it does offer a more stable experience. Viber is always suffering from service disruption with the latest being 4 disruptions in just 1.5 months time.

Not sure which platform WhatsApp is more incline to, but Viber is focused heavily on Android, followed by iOS and lastly Windows Phone 8 in a far distant 3rd. Just look at the long list of features it is missing as compared to its Android counterpart?

dvb2000 said,
I only know 1 person who uses Whatsapp instead of Viber.

In the grand scheme of things, your anecdotal evidence is irrelevant. Whatsapp has far more active and registered users than Viber (over 400 million active vs. 100 million active - source: http://www.techinasia.com/raku...s-100-million-active-users/). Even though the already downloaded app currently works, a permanent removal of Whatsapp would be a significant blow to WP (and yes, I've read the article update stating that it appears to be a temporary measure).