Top 9 Ways to Fix WhatsApp Notifications Not Working Unless You Open the App

With over 2 billion users worldwide, WhatsApp continues to be an essential part of people’s lives. Real-time push notification is an integral part of any instant messaging app’s experience. At times, you might not receive new notifications until you open WhatsApp. If you are facing the same, here are the ways to fix WhatsApp notifications not working unless you open the app.

You might miss important messages or group chats when push notifications fail to work on WhatsApp. Also, you won’t want to open WhatsApp just to check new notifications. It’s a tedious, time-consuming, and not a practical solution. Let’s go through the steps above and fix the notification issue on WhatsApp.

1. Check If You Have Muted a WhatsApp Contact or Group

You might have muted several contacts or groups on WhatsApp. If that’s the case, you will continue to receive messages, but WhatsApp won’t notify you about them. Here’s how you can identify muted conversations and unmute them on WhatsApp.

Step 1: Open WhatsApp on your phone.

Step 2: Check for a mute icon (a crossed out speaker) beside a conversation.

Step 3: Open relevant conversation that you want to unmute.

Step 4: Tap on the contact name at the top.

Step 5: Tap on Muted and select Unmute.

Find all relevant muted conversations (check for a mute icon) and unmute them.

2. Check Archived Chats

Over time, you may archive several WhatsApp contacts or groups. Since you don’t want to engage in such conversations, WhatsApp won’t notify you about new messages from archived chats. You can recheck the archived chats list and unarchive relevant conversations.

Step 1: Open WhatsApp on your phone.

Step 2: Tap on the Archived menu.

Step 3: Long-tap on any conversation (swipe left on iPhone) and select Unarchive option.

The conversation will appear on your main WhatsApp home, and you will now receive new notifications for unarchived chats.

3. Check WhatsApp Notification Settings (iPhone)

iOS allows you to customize app notifications. If you have disabled WhatsApp notifications on the Lock Screen or Notification Center, chat alerts won’t appear on your phone.

Step 1: Open Settings on iPhone.

Step 2: Scroll to Notifications and open WhatsApp.

Step 3: Tap on the radio button below the Lock Screen, Notification Centre, and Banners.

4. Enable Background App Refresh (iPhone)

When you disable background app refresh for WhatsApp, the app can’t fetch new data in the background. You must open WhatsApp to receive new notifications. Here’s how you can enable background app refresh for WhatsApp.

Step 1: Open Settings and scroll to WhatsApp.

Step 2: Enable the Background App Refresh toggle from the following menu.

5. Lock WhatsApp in the Multitasking Menu (Android)

Most Android smartphone manufacturers implement aggressive battery-saving settings and completely kill apps in the background. If you don’t open WhatsApp for a long time, the system might disable all app functions in the background to save battery. As a workaround, you have an option to lock essential apps like WhatsApp, Gmail, etc. in the background.

Step 1: Open the multitasking menu on your Android phone.

Step 2: Long-tap on the WhatsApp app icon and select Lock.

The system won’t kill any WhatsApp process in the background from now on.

6. Disable Battery Optimization for WhatsApp (Android)

This is yet another trick Android-based phone makers implement to save phone battery life. You can give WhatsApp unrestricted access to allow it to use the battery in the background without restrictions. The current ‘Optimized’ setting for WhatsApp may prevent you from getting push notifications unless you open the app.

Step 1: Long-tap on the WhatsApp app icon and open the app info menu.

Step 2: Select the Battery menu.

Step 3: Tap on the radio button beside Unrestricted.

7. Remove WhatsApp from Scheduled Summary

Scheduled Summary is a neat iOS feature that allows you to delay notifications from selected apps to a convenient time. If you have added WhatsApp to Scheduled Summary, you won’t receive WhatsApp notifications in real-time.

Step 1: Launch iPhone Settings app.

Step 2: Scroll to Notifications.

Step 3: Open Scheduled Summary.

Step 4: Scroll down and remove WhatsApp from the list.

8. Leave WhatsApp Beta Program

Are you a part of the WhatsApp beta program? While the beta builds allow you to try out new features before public rollout, they often carry bugs. You can opt out of WhatsApp beta build and revert to the stable app version.

Open Google Play Store, search for WhatsApp, and open the app page. From the WhatsApp app info menu, find an option to leave the beta program.

After a few minutes, WhatsApp will remove you from the beta program and ask you to download the stable version. iPhone users can leave the beta program from the TestFlight app.

9. Update WhatsApp

An outdated WhatsApp builds on iPhone or Android can leave you with notification issues in the app. Open the App Store or Google Play Store and update WhatsApp to the latest version.

Get Real-Time WhatsApp Notifications

Issues with real-time WhatsApp notifications defeat the purpose of using IM apps in the first place. You can always ditch WhatsApp in favor of Telegram or Signal, but you may not find all your contacts on other messaging apps. Instead, you can use the tricks above and fix WhatsApp notifications not working unless you open the app issue.

Last updated on 20 June, 2022

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