WhatsApp is broken for Windows Phone 8.1 and there's no fix in sight

Normally, I’m a pretty big advocate of WhatsApp. After KIK unceremoniously abandoned Windows Phone in 2012, WhatsApp rose up to take its place. Sure, the app had issues on occasion, but the development team was busy pumping out updates so often it became a running joke (remember update Fridays?).

Lately, things are slipping. For instance, the public version of the app hasn’t had an update since January. That’s almost four months ago. Granted, WhasApp beta users have been receiving updates nearly every other day, but even that does not guarantee a steady or working app. New features have not been added in weeks, just occasionally moving around of elements resulting in a game of ‘what’s changed?’ each time a new version is released (changelogs don’t exist, evidently).

Now, Windows Phone 8.1 users are experiencing issues with notifications (see our forums). For some reason, alerts are showing up 10, 20 or 30 minutes later, assuming you get notified at all. It’s not much better for those on the beta, where at least a pop-up alert reminds you that “some features” won’t work in 8.1. Annoyingly, this pop up shows up each and every time you open the app, making me not want to use it any longer.

WhatsApp Beta Alert

Perhaps it’s unfair to expect WhatsApp to work perfectly during the 8.1 Preview, but it’s not even clear why there are random issues with delivering notifications (every other app appears to work). It’s also not obvious why this can’t be fixed – even in the beta – considering the high profile nature of this app. Throw in the never-ending testing, the lack of a public update and the broken notifications for the million of us (give or take) on 8.1, it’s a tad frustrating.

WhatsApp is supposed to receive a major update with VOIP, which could spark a new renaissance. Maybe the team is holding back for Windows Phone 8.1 release to be official, something that is expected by us at the end of May. Regardless, at least for now I’m using Facebook Messenger, which is a bit surprising. But it’s been reliable, forgetting the white-screen-on-resume bug, and hey, it has hilarious stickers to boot. Plus I can use it on multiple phones.

Now it’s your turn. You always ask about an update in comments, so here’s your chance to rant (or praise) WhatsApp. Am I being too critical? 

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Reader comments

WhatsApp is broken for Windows Phone 8.1 and there's no fix in sight



I use telegram (migram on WP) and its nothing short of fantastic. Anyone looking for a nice alternative should have a look! :)

Actually both facebook and WhatsApp are poorest app ever on windows phone,we cannot share audio files on WhatsApp,no status hide option,no automatic message scheduler of what's app,nothing instead of crash crash crash

windows phone 8.1 is the best operating system out there but  App support, selection and functionality is a big let down,which almost leaves the OS kinda disabled. I really love my L925 but am thinking of jumping ship if this issue is not seriously adressed

i dont agree , if that's true why Nokia release new Lumia which suppor Andriod , it's kind of failare admit , i think so , i have Lumia 720 and alot of app keeps get crashing specially when you use it continuosly and sometimes take a time while it's loading 

Not worse than viber. I talk to someone for an hour with maybe 30 or so incoming messages and get notifications throughout the day one at a time. If I hadn't stopped using it, I would have turned notifications off completely, making the app useless anyway.

Viber, wechat and hike have gone way better then what's app on windows phone..... People should oppose what's app until they release an updated app... I cant see stickers sent via android phones... Its irritating... They make fun... Awww.. Windows phone users cant see what we androiders talk .... Insulting

I agree. After using so many chat apps on windows I like hike the most. It does allow only your circle of friends to view your status and last seen and better interface and good support team. Most of all you will recieve notification even when you are offline via SMS (only India currently). Moreover they run reward programs. 100% better than WhatsApp.

I like Migram and telegram in general, but 2 things hold it back:

1. You must use a phone number and if you ever change your number, your account is gone.

2. You must use a phone number and have it with you to log in. Ie. you can't login online without your phone.  I currently use Google Hangouts while at work, but since it's Google, it sucks on Windows Phone (IM+ is meh, and it'll stop working in a couple weeks anyways).

With 8.1, you can only sign in to Skype with your Microsoft account. If your contacts aren't attached to your Microsoft account (mine are not) then Skype is useless on Windows Phone. Was not like that before 8.1.

Is anyone getting three notifications for each Messenger message? This is something I find really annoying, more so than Whatsapp being broken.

Ever since Whatsapp landed in the hands of Facebook, what I feared is turning out to be ture. Things are just getting worse as time passes by.

Not disappointing at all, it still works perfectly well on WP 8! mind you, I would like to use migram more, awesome app, but no one else is using it, as none of my ios and android contacts see the need when their whatsapp works perfectly well. But as i say whatsapp works fine on WP 8, tough luck if you downloaded 8.1 before its official release date!

I hate facebook team. They are holding the development of WP8 App by favoring Apple. They just built something because of the pressure from Nokia. Half baked FB massager, Instagram and WhatsApp.

They didn't build WA, as far as I know both Instagram and WA are still operating fairly autonomously

I think most who have updated to 8.1 don't really need whatsapp. It's a product demanded by the silent majority, whom are all still on wp8

I think Whatsapp needs a new development team.

Whatsapp seriously doesn't know how to do incremental releases. First they need to push out updates for bugs that people are facing and at a later stage release an update with new features. Waiting to push out everything at one go just keeps getting users frustrated which is scewing up their credibility.

Add to that adding more bugs than features when such a massive update is pushed out. Why not add a feature or two, fix bugs, then add more, then fix bugs and so on and so forth on biweekly basis? Can't be that hard.

Not at all too critical.
Something else that's bothering me is that whenever I open whatsapp, there's a humming electrical sound coming from my speaker I guess..
Really annoying and weid

Yeah! Exactly! i tought i was crazy!! xdd

Its like a music or streaming "something" kinda trick to receive notifications..or something like that..

Its so annoying

I suppose it is sound API initialization (gone wrong?). I just ignore it.

The noise is just digital-analog converter or amplifier being turned on, since it's just builtin speaker it is quite lo-fi, thus the noise.

ah well... i agree and it's defenitely a major issue for me that i can use whatsapp only on one phone and not via an account (like ALL OTHERS).

I'm on an iPhone 5S right now but i planned to switch back to my 920 in a week with 8.1 installed. As i use whatsapp everyday, this may letting me wait a bit (or much) longer and stay on my iPhone for now.

I didn't have it also until recently after I travelled to India from Dubai. I thought maybe it was cause I am currently in a different country. But going by these comments, I guess not. 

Just pray that you don't get it. 

Even I thought I was the only person facing the delayed notification issue since last 4 days... Thanks Daniel for this article... Now atleast I know I am not the only one...

I'm not on the beta and haven't had any issues with whatsapp on 8.1. I've never seen that error message before either. I get all my notifications without a problem.

That's just it, it's random. But I have three other people on 8.1 and WhatsApp and notifications are all over the place now, so we don't use it any longer.

I have a 1520 and experiencing the reported issue, so there you have it...
Btw, Battery sense says WhatsApp is eating quite a lot of battery, so this might be an issue as well (and might even explain the increased battery drainage after updating to 8.1).

Yeah me too, it's very annoying, I have to warn everyone that Whatsapp doesn't work properly on Windows Phone, it's hardly an advert for the device!!!

I was having the identical problem with the regular build of Whatsapp on a WP8 (not 8.1) device a month or two ago; but the problem seems to have corrected itself.

My notifications seem to work fine on WiFi, but no notification work on data plan. None of my apps give me any notification on data plan. And yes, I checked the Battery Saver settings.

But what really bothers me is that I can't send pre-recorded videos anymore on Whatsapp -.-

Just installed it but I can't figure out how to move a video to the Pictures folder. Can you guide me, please?

I have the same problem as Daniel, my notifications come in bundles, like 10 or 20 at a time and usually delayed by 10 minutes after the first message. And pre recorded videos aren't going through anymore.

Yup some tyms notification come 15minutes late ....sent what's app team an email 2 days back still no response... Can't switch to any other messengers because in android what's app works way better and most of my friends are using it too... Really frustrating..

I cant take the decision of not using WhatsApp as my business depends on it...me and my clients use WhatsApp for business... WhatsApp is huge in India...out of my 600 odd contacts 384 are on WhatsApp... Its a sad sad situation

That's the problem I'm having - if I have the app open it's fine - though you can imagine the battery life!

How bizarre - it was perfect under 8.0. Have they (whatsapp) not even responded?

I had endless problems with it burning through my battery in WP8.  Reinstalled it with 8.1 and it runs perfectly.

Haven't had any of the issues above.  Maybe it is totally random?!?!?

Yes, I was thinking it was just my phone.  It was working fine, then suddenly no notifications or notifications 30 minutes later.  At least I do not need to reinstall it again and again.

I don't have that bug in wp8.1 dp yet.. Luckily.. Though notifications are quite delayed when using WIFI..

Um.. What? You don't have the bug, but the notifications are delayed? Mate, you have it too.

This is what they replied to me:

" Jami T. (WhatsApp Support)

Apr 27 01:07


Thanks for your message.

On Windows Phone, Push notifications come through a connection to Microsoft's servers, whereas messages come from a connection made through WhatsApp servers. The Push notification do not get processed by WhatsApp. When someone sends you a WhatsApp message, WhatsApp server sends a notification to your phone via Microsoft Push Notification Service (MPNS). Then MPNS manages to send the Toast notification to your phone. Currently, all of our servers are operating and connecting to MPNS normally.

If you are still experiencing any delay or failure to receive the Toast notification on your device, your phone may be disconnected from MPNS. Microsoft's servers might be unable to connect to your device. In this case, please contact your mobile provider or your Wi-Fi administrator to help you configure the network settings on your device. If the problem still persists, you can contact Windows Phone Support for more information: http://www.windowsphone.com/en-us/contact-us

Please also note that even though you can connect to internet to use WhatsApp or other applications, you may encounter a networking issues to connect to MPNS because the notifications and messages use different types of connections.

For more information about MPNS, please see this article: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/hh221549.aspx

Please visit this article to get connected on your Windows Phone: http://www.windowsphone.com/en-GB/how-to/wp8/start/get-connected

If you have any other questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us. We would be happy to help!

Jami T.

WhatsApp Support Team

Interested in translating for us? Please visit http://translate.whatsapp.com

Take a look at our FAQ: http://www.whatsapp.com/faq/ "


Basically, they are pointing the finger square at Microsoft. What do you all think?

I think developers can opt in to use MPNS. In this case Microsoft will send the push "in a way it improves battery life" and not immediately.

I'm almost sure developers don't must use it for push. It's only a easy way. They can  implement their own push directly to the phone.

All push notifications have to be sent through MPNS. AFAIK there is no way to bypass MPNS

The irony is that with wp8.1 mpns is no longer the only way of notification to WP devices. It supports wns now too (which you'll find with win 8.x apps), which makes notification a breeze (I'm developing a wp8.1 w wns support)

As well as my three Telegram apps (I'm testing them to choose the best one), Facebook apps (facebook and Messenger), NextGen Reader, Skype, Twitter, etc., receive every notification inmedietly (they sync/receive messages at the same time that my pc and mac do) I think Whatsapp Support Team is bulls***, and they have been like that allways (still remember when they used the music background task in WP7 to connect their own servers).

Sometimes I receive Skype call 10 minutes after they are "created". Have similar problems with Facebook and Twitter too.

According to this article about MPNS (number 4),  

To optimize available bandwith, these notifications might be sent in batches to the phone by the service

I hope that an update will be there soon... Push notifications don't work properly. Lumia 1020 WP8.1

Like I've already said, it would be great if BBM comes soon and with a well executed app (I'm not holding my breath), the way WA has behaved lately is disappointing, I'm not sure what they are trying to accomplish, but the app has sucked the past few months on both 8.0 and 8.1. The constant addition of "new features" to the beta without anything being pushed to the wide release is frustrating. Also they should have probably addressed the bugs they've had (app crashing, constants notification issues, battery drains) before introducing new features. Personally I'll take those three bugs addressed over the useless backgrounds feature in the app.

Strange, I was doing just fine with KiK til I had to master reset my device, then now it doesn't let me sign in. And I had no idea support for the platform is gone...WhatsApp I use, but not as often, myself. What disheartening news to hear on both ends. Le sigh.....

I get spammed on Kik all the time and there's no way to prevent it (they added a feature to help, but only in iOS/Android).

But WP7 app works in WP8 Daniel! that's what Kik team says. why would they update it? ;)

nah, but seriously, Kik account system sucks, I mean, some account get stuck in S and they dont fix that, they even say if you deactivate your account because of that in their question section.

the only solution to avoid spam in WP is having a weird username and only give it to people you know. because that's how kik sucks in general. and I wish some people didn't use that crap.

I hate that annoying dialog on WhatsApp Beta(WP8.1) and I hate the support team also. It is like we report some bug on WP8.1 and they are like "We are not focused on Windows Phone 8.1 now". I don't know what they are doing or what they have planned for the Windows Phone users.

I am using chat rooms (so good) and facebook messenger. Notification problems are coming in WhatsApp, and some other bugs too.

I also hate that now the toast/notification displays "Message from <person>" instead of showing a preview/snippet of the message like they used to before 

That's why i really hate this developer version. Just back to WP8 and love how everything works.

And have Game hub, and GOOD music app (no that laggy one on wp8.1)!

Maybe but not so much as WP8.1. Audio level problems, game hub, cursor on text, apps problems and especially, battery SERIOUS issues. Thanks but no thanks.

Audio level problems? Interesting, can you elaborate please. Also which apps are giving trouble?

Sure, no problem!

Audio level problems: Some devices (like L920, L810, L1020) had some pitch noises, when you are listening music or playing games or apps, and some song pass to another there is a "pitch" batch weird noise sound between songs. Really anonying.

Apps like toast notificactions on Facebook, some gps problems with Waze, some problems with Internet Explorer on private mode, some problems of hoverheating on cam related apps.

Most of them are explained on forums.

damn that sucks, I've had the pitch problem one one occasion, but can't say that I've had any issues with anything else, only notifications issues are WA and funny enough, I'm not sure how this happened, but my battery life improved 

I just have the pitch sound problem, and is really disturbing. Can listen music well, really hurts whe you pass from song to song.

My battery with Cortana and location and several services off are stupid, around to 9 hours, some of then on stand by.

Im back on WP8 and zero problems, just some delay on toast but sometimes.

I dont know if is for WP8.1 or the lack of cyan update, but WP8.1 was a pain for me and i worried, i hope something fix when the oficial release is on.

I feel like that with so many app not updated on WP. They're made than abandoned. App experience for so many app have been sub par

Remove whatsapp from store.asshole app no update nearly 4months.

Posted via Windows Phone Central App

Notifications not working for me, I have been using Facebook Messenger instead, have sent them e-mail with no feedback. Whatsapp is a joke on WP, users should ditch them and go for other apps. Is Facebook doing this on purpose to promote their own messenger?

Since fb has bought WhatsApp !! I don't think thts the problem!! The problem lies with the dev !!!

well there is Wazapp and whatsup in MeeGo (whatsup made by @cepiperez he's like the MeeGo's Rudy) so why no ask them both to work together. 

Mine started witout any issues, but past few days no notifications at all or I get a swarm of them that have accumulated throughout the day

It's annoying when there's a group conversation and you get the messages 30 mins later. It's getting better for me though. Battery consumption needs to be fixed!

This app has saved me thousands of dollars and still yet to come, I'm sticking with it all the way till the end. Thanks for the article.

Misteriously im having a problem when im trying to check my account with the code. Everytime i set it, a message pops up saying that i have alredy requested my code, and a timer telling me how much time do i have to wait to try again. Can this be related with this huge problem with Whatsapp?

Nope, not being too critical as for a few days now I have been receiving notifications for messages a few hours later after they have been sent. The worst one was more than a day late!
Surprised where did this random glitch come from...as it was working perfectly fine before on my L920 running wp8.1 dp.

One of my friends sent an email to WhatsApp to sign up for Beta but they replied that WhatsApp is not accepting beta testers for the time being as a new update with new features and bug fixes for the public version is in the works.

As a long time WP user, I'm almost stopped using WhatsApp & Facebook! Its frustrating on WP & never perfect. And never will be!

This is very, VERY bad news for wp. Whatsapp is the most used and famous messenger. For wp to be left out while the other OS evolve isn't a good signal.

Yeah me and my girlfriend both not getting notifications. Shit. Facebook irritates me with the white screen thing too.


I have a problem with attaching photos. After 8.1 all pics are being saved to "Other" folder instead of the "WhatsApp" . Now it wont allow me to see view and attach anything from "Other" folder.

I e-mailed The WhatsApp support team about this problem and all they said was, It might be the problem of MPNS :/ u gotta be kidding guys :|

But as far as I know MPNS try to save your battery live so it try to deliver many pushs (it's right?) at the same time and not immediatelly.

I dont know that, but It should good if u say so daniel. Amazingly People at WhatsApp had the nerves to blame MPNS while the problem seems to be their own! I'm freaking annoyed at the moment...

....These are signs that Microsoft just don't know what to do.... How come no VP or even the CEO can call Suckerberg and ask him to update & improve Whatsapp for WP???

if the late Jobs were in charge ...he would have called that kid Suckerberg and ask him to update the WP client for Whatsapp...

.....my whatsapp is working fine.... And i remember when we where proud of them cause they have us a mighty amount of updates

I have been receiving notifications for messages after several minutes after they have been sent.... It crashes if we load previous texts... Hope they fix this problem asap!!!

While WhatsApp could be criticized for moving too slowly with regards to updates, it is not really fair to blame them for issues relating to the developer version of WP 8.1. Install at your own risk or wait for the final version.

Even if we cant blame dor the dev preview version we can for those who r using WP 8.0. Watsapp is even sucking on that version. So its high time. So those usless watsapp programmers needs to get their ass on work for WP.

Hold on right there, you use Facebook Messenger? I thought you said you don't have a Facebook account; unless you meant you don't use it as much. If so, this is breaking news!

Hello, this is asimografer from your IG account. Had told you I'll give a shout-out here the next time I saw you. ;)

We've been waiting the WhatsApp update from a long time, wallpapers... And better looking and working app.. Far from that they are very quite but hopefully its because they are working on a very big update (we wish)

It seems like these heavyweights just don't care for WP platform anymore. Instragam is still in beta as well but luckily there are other alternatives. Wish someone would build a third party WhatsApp client.