Getting WhatsApp to work on more than one smartphone had always felt like a pipe dream; it doesn’t feel like a feature that would ever be introduced. This makes reviewing different smartphones slightly more cumbersome, especially if I’m switching between different platforms (iOS and Android).
But there is light at the end of the tunnel. Thanks to the introduction of companion mode – albeit in beta form – I can now run WhatsApp on two different phones natively at the same time. The best part is, I don’t even need to sideload any particular version of WhatsApp or root the phone to accomplish this.
If you’ve always wanted to run WhatsApp on multiple phones natively, here’s how to do it.
First, a disclaimer. Unfortunately, this method only works if you’re trying to get WhatsApp to run natively on a second device running on Android. It’s fine if your primary WhatsApp device is an iPhone – this is the case for me – but you can’t have a “second WhatsApp” running on another iPhone.
Okay, to start off, just download WhatsApp through the Google Play Store on your second phone. Once you’ve done that, enable developer mode by tapping on the “build number” option seven times. Next, go to the developer options and find for the “minimum width” setting. Make sure you record the original value first before proceeding to the next step.
Now, you’ll need to change the value to 600; wide enough to “trick” apps into thinking your phone is a tablet, as companion mode is currently offered for Android tablets. Finally, just launch WhatsApp after adjusting the width value, and go through the setup process until you see a QR code. Scan this with your primary WhatsApp phone to complete the link, and voila! You’ve got WhatsApp running natively on a second phone.
Of course, make sure you change the minimum width of your phone back to the default value to avoid running into any issues. For the sake of context, I set up the Samsung Galaxy A34 as my second WhatsApp phone, and the setup process should be similar to most (if not all) modern Android devices.
Technically, you can have up to four other Android phones running on WhatsApp simultaneously, as you’re only limited by the max amount of linked devices (up to four). This includes any other devices you’ve linked through WhatsApp Web or the desktop app.
As for how well WhatsApp runs on my second phone, it’s (almost) flawless. I can make and receive WhatsApp calls without issue, there’s no delay in receiving messages, and my primary WhatsApp device doesn’t need to be connected to the internet either for the app to keep running; perfect.
Well, I do occasionally get the “waiting for this message” notice, and not all of my chat history is reflected in the second WhatsApp phone. But all in all, these are not huge issues to me.
It’s worth mentioning again that companion mode is still being tested in the beta version of WhatsApp, so there’s a chance you may run into some bugs. Once testing has concluded, we reckon the feature will be added to the phone version of the app without needing to go through the workaround outlined in this article.
And that is how you can get WhatsApp to run natively on a second, third, or fourth phone. While it’s unfortunate that companion mode is only limited to Android devices at the moment, there’s a good chance iOS will get it too once the feature gets out of beta.
In the meantime, I don’t have to trouble myself by setting up WhatsApp over and over again when I need to review new smartphones. I cannot overstate just how happy I am to be able to use WhatsApp (properly) on a second phone now.