WhatsApp is coming to the web

WhatsApp is coming to the desktop, thanks to a web client that launched today for Chrome and Android. Reached by the Verge, WhatsApp confirmed earlier rumors, which pointed to a newly live page at web.whatsapp.com as proof. “The primary use is of course still on your phone,” a spokesman said, “but there are people who spend time in front of a computer at home or at work and this will help bridge the two.” The spokesman said the company plans to bring the same experience to iOS, although the timeframe is still unclear. Detailing the features in a subsequent blog post, the company said, “we really hope you find web client useful in your everyday lives.”

With more than 600 million users, WhatsApp is one of the largest chat clients in the world, and the app’s growth has fueled rumors concerning the company’s next move. In November, WhatsApp partnered with Whisper Systems for end-to-end encryption, bringing strong security to an unusually broad user base. In December, the company’splans for voice-calling were revealed by images scraped from WhatsApp’s public site, although the company has yet to publicly release the feature. At the same time, there’s been intense speculation that the company might expand to the desktop for simple business reasons.