If you live in a country where everyone you know uses WhatsApp, you know how frustrating it gets sometimes. Not just the annoying groups from your high school days that your friends won’t let you exit and the ones you can only mute for 8 days, but also picking up your phone to reply when you’re on your desk. If you’re a techie, you know better systems exist, say Telegram for example. But you’re here because everyone else is.
All these crimes are nothing compared to the big one – WhatsApp only works on the phone it is linked with. That means even if you’re sitting there on your big screen computer with full scale keyboard you can’t make use of it.
You may try using Bluestacks for Android and use WhatsApp on your PC with a different number, as WhatsApp doesn’t allow you to use one connection at two places. But that still doesn’t solve the fundamental problem.
Thankfully, if you have a rooted Android phone and are willing to spend a couple of seconds setting up, you finally can use WhatsApp on your PC, via your rooted Android phone.
Setting Up WhatsAir
WhatsAir (UPDATE: This tool is not available anymore) is the app we’ll be using to accomplish this. It’s a shell app and all it does is beams WhatsApp messages to the PC that’s on the same network and then pushes the replies back to the WhatsApp app.
Download the app, start it up and grant the root permissions. Make sure your phone is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as your PC is. Tap the start button and the app will generate a password.
Now open a modern browser on your PC, like Chrome, and enter the address the app says. The page will now ask for a password. Type in the one showing on your Android phone, authenticate and you’re in. The connection will stay active until you tap the Stop button from the app or close the browser tab.
You must have noticed from the WhatsAir’s Play Store description and the website that the developer isn’t well versed with English. Never mind though, because this disparity doesn’t actually come in the way of you using the app. Even though it says Senden (German), you know it means Send.
Also, the interface is rather ugly. But it works. From the sidebar you can see the contacts with which you’re currently having a chat. You can start a new one by clicking on the new chat button.
WhatsAir has all the important bits. The now ubiquitous double check marks for read status, the available status for you and your contact and their status message are shown in the browser window.
What Works And What Doesn’t?
I tried chatting with three people simultaneously and WhatsAir breezed through it. But it did have some hiccups here and there. Messages for example sometimes duplicated in WhatsAir (while being fine in WhatsApp) and sometimes the chat refused to update even thought there were new messages. Clicking on the contact from the sidebar did the trick.
WhatsAir is text only right now. No emojis, no pictures or videos. There’s no group chat support yet. Also, there are no notifications. Integration with Chrome desktop notifications would be appreciated in future updates.
It’s In Beta
WhatsAir is a new app and in beta. But that shouldn’t stop you from using it if you’re frustrated with picking up your phone every time WhatsApp buzzes. If you want to report an issue or help the developer out in some way, like translating the app, hit him up on the XDA thread.