You can now send any file type on WhatsApp – Say goodbye to renaming files

Rufaro Madamombe Avatar

Around 3 weeks ago, we talked about how we could soon be able to send any file on WhatsApp. When we talked about that, the feature was only available to select people in select countries who are testers of new update features of the app. Well yesterday the chat application has added the feature to send any file to anyone regardless of it’s format to their latest stable release app version.

Before the update, people were only restricted to sending documents, pictures and audio files of select file formats. This meant that if you wanted to send unsupported file formats like .apk, .zip etc, you had to rename the file to a supported file format. For example if you wanted to send the apk for your favorite app, you’d rename it such that it ends with .txt.

After doing that, you’d be able to send it via WhatsApp. The receiver would have to rename the file and remove that .txt you put so that they can actually install the application. This worked because any digital file is basically a series of 1s and 0s meaning that even if you change the file format, all you’re doing is telling the receiving computer or smartphone to open that digital file as that file format but not actually changing the contents of the file.

Obviously this was not ideal because both the sender and receiver would have to complete multiple steps in order for them to send or access an unsupported file format. This update removes that hustle and makes it easier for everyone to just send any file on WhatsApp. To send a file like an .apk, you just have to select the attachment icon, click documents, navigate to that file and then click it to select and send.

The receiver will get the file as it is and they just have to download it and click it to open it. Even-though this is huge step in making the WhatsApp experience better, it does make it easy to pirate applications. However, people we’re already doing that, it’s that now it takes less steps so it might not really matter.

Apart from sending documents or files, you can now send uncompressed photos and videos. Meaning that for all you photography enthusiasts, you can now send those high quality raw files that you capture and wow your friends. Well they might have to install another app like Adobe Lightroom (mobile app) in order to open the file as they are now widely supported by normal gallery apps.

As of now, you can only send files with a maximum size of 64MB on WhatsApp Web, 100MB on Android, and 128MB on Apple iOS. Another thing that I noticed is that you can now select any file type on WhatsApp Web in order to send it to someone, it will be sent on your phone. So it’s good to know that their web client also now supports this feature. 

One response

  1. Tendai Katsuwa

    I hope that someone does not send me a virus !