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What is WhatsApp?

WhatsApp is a free to download, instant messaging app which can be installed on iOS, Android and Windows phones. WhatsApp was created as a texting alternative, running from WIFI or the user’s existing cellular data plan rather than using SMS allowances.

WhatsApp users connect with one another using phone numbers and you cannot search for users by name. The app can browse the contacts that already exist in your cellphone to find people who are already using WhatsApp so that you can start chatting to them instantly. In order for the app to browse your existing contacts, you will have to allow it access.

Users can have direct, one-to-one conversations or create groups of people with the purpose of forming a group chat. Group chats can be personalized by the user by adding a name to the group and a group display image. Within any chat, users are able to share messages, images, videos and send audio messages as well as sharing their location. Another feature of WhatsApp is the possibility to send out a ‘Broadcast Message’. When someone sends out a broadcast message, they can select multiple people in which they would like to send it to. It will go to everyone that the user has selected.

WhatsApp users have the ability to set the status of their availability. They can do so by either selecting one of the pre-set options such as; available, at school, at work or in a meeting or they can create one of their own, composing a personal message.

The app can be customized to the user’s preference. It can be customized by choosing a ‘Screen name’ to be displayed to friends within chat as well as providing the option for users to add a profile photo, change conversation backgrounds and edit chat bubble colors. All the people you contact most frequently will be added to a page called ‘Favorites’ so that they are easier to find when you are trying to start a chat with them.

WhatsApp Age Restrictions

The Whatsapp Terms of use indicate that no one under the age of 16 is allowed to use the app, although it is not uncommon for younger users to be active on the app.

How to block a user on WhatsApp using iOS

  1. To block a user, go to your ‘Settings’. You can find your settings in the bottom right corner of the app. The symbol should look like a small, singular cog.
  2. Once you have located and selected your ‘Settings’ button, find and press the ‘Account’ button. The ‘Account’ button should be located near the center of the page and should be accompanied by a key-like symbol.
  3. When you have selected the ‘Account’ button, locate and choose the ‘Privacy’ option.
  4. Once you have chosen the ‘Privacy’ option, it will take you through to another set of options. Select the ‘Blocked users’ setting.
  5. Once you have selected the ‘Blocked users’ option, in this section, you can view the users that have been blocked by you previously, add users to your block list and remove them from your block list. To block a user, just select the ‘Add new…’ button located at the bottom of the list of blocked users.

How to block a user on WhatsApp using Android

  1. Open WhatsApp and go to your Chats screen.
  2. Tap the Menu button > Settings > Account > Privacy > Blocked Contacts.
  3. This page displays all contacts that you have blocked.
  4. Tap the Add blocked contacts icon in the top right.

WhatsApp Support