WhatsApp, one of the most popular instant messaging apps, allows you to back up your chats and media to Google Drive on Android. This allows you to carry your chats and media if you change to another Android smartphone or reset your device.
The company has now announced that it has signed up a new agreement with Google as a result of which WhatsApp backups will no longer count against a user’s Google Drive storage quota. This policy will come into effect for all users on November 12, 2018.
Note that any WhatsApp backups that have not been updated in more than a year will automatically be removed from storage. To avoid the loss of any backups, WhatsApp has recommended in its announcement, you should manually back up WhatsApp before October 30.
A lot of users use WhatsApp very actively – especially for work and sharing media – and would appreciate the extra storage space they’ll have access to on their Google Drive account. For others though, the text backup of chats is only a few kilobytes of data and this offer won’t really matter.
One of the issues with WhatsApp’s backup option is that it is tied to a different cloud service provider on each platform – iCloud for iPhones and OneDrive for Windows phones. So, if you’re jumping platforms, there’s no official way (there are few third-party apps that allow you to do it) to restore your Android backup to iPhone, for example.
This announcement comes close on the heels of Google opening up Google One storage subscription plans for everyone in the U.S. Google One is a consolidation of all of Google’s subscription services, including Google Drive, Google Photos, and Gmail, under one plan.