Lo and behold, WhatsApp for Windows Phone has returned. The popular messenger app vanished from view just over a week ago and has remained "private" since. We got in touch with the WhatsApp team in attempt to withdraw information detailing the reasons why it was hidden from consumers who may be looking to download (or reinstall) the app, but had no luck with replies received from employees.
We later relayed the news that WhatsApp for Windows Phone was possibly removed because of security concerns and vulnerabilities. A German website reported an Android WhatsApp sniffing tool was able to intercept messages sent using the messaging app over a WiFi connection. WhatsApp later denied this as the cause for the app pull and assured Windows Phone Central that this was not a security related incident.
Nokia Netherlands later stepped in and revealed the app would be made available (with an update pushed for existing users) over the weekend, and sure enough - it's here. It's listed as version 2.8 and while we're still unaware as to what's new (and what exactly was the cause for the app to be pulled), it's good to see the app back on the Marketplace. We have noticed that the sharing of contacts and location is now supported. Let us know in the comments should you spot anything we've overlooked.
The app is still available for free, as is the service itself. We first assumed the company took it down to implement its planned subscription requirements, which will have users pay a $1.99 fee on a yearly basis to continue using the service (after a year of use), but we still haven't been notified to "upgrade" our account or to fork out for the mico-fee. Information is still yet to come to light on this potential subscription plan.
We would have liked the WhatsApp team to better communicate what was happening to the Windows Phone app, but at least it appears to be solved. You can download WhatsApp from the Marketplace for free.