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Signal helps you transfer chats to a new phone

It could help the recent wave of WhatsApp converts.

Published onMarch 15, 2021

Signal Private Messenger stock photo 6
  • Signal has released a beta app with a tool to help transfer chats to a new Android phone.
  • It uses Wi-Fi Direct to migrate chats over a private, secure connection.
  • It’s not certain when this will be available out of beta.

If you’re one of the many people who balked at WhatsApp’s new privacy policy (whether merited or not) and switched to Signal, you probably have a lingering question: how do you transfer those secure chats to a new phone? Thankfully, the developers have you covered. As TestingCatalog and XDA report, Signal has released a beta 5.5.0 app for Android that helps you migrate conversations.

A new tool in the Signal beta uses a private Wi-Fi Direct connection to transfer chats from your old device to the new one. You’ll need to keep both phones close by during the migration, but this ensures your messages will stay encrypted and thus out of sight of any determined thieves or spies. You can start the process by visiting the Chats section of the app’s settings on your older phone and tapping “transfer account.”

Read more: WhatsApp vs Telegram vs Signal: Which should you use?

It’s not certain when the chats transfer feature will reach a stable Signal release. You may want to hold off if you insist on reliability.

It’s not surprising that a transfer tool would reach Signal at this stage. Its creators have been racing to add features as WhatsApp users flock to the platform, and migration is the next logical step. This is how Signal keeps you loyal when you might otherwise part for Telegram (which already has a chat history tool) or another alternative. Not that many will necessarily complain — this could set your mind at ease if you’re thinking of upgrading phones and want to keep your messages intact.