WhatsApp just made transferring chat history so easy but there may be one big limit

WhatsApp is making it easier to transfer chat logs from your old phone to a new one just by scanning a QR code.

Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg made the initial announcement on his Instagram channel where he states this method lets you move your data privately without ever having to leave your devices.” Looking at the video he posted, you first open up the QR code on the older device, then scan said code on the newer phone. Give it about 10 seconds to finish up and you’re done. Other reports state the Chat Transfer tool can be found under the Chats section in the Settings menu.

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Compared to the old method of having to back up your history on either Google Drive or iCloud, this is a lot more straightforward. You’re effectively cutting out the middleman plus you don’t have to worry about hitting storage limits if your WhatsApp account has several gigabytes worth of media saved on it.

As great as this new feature may be, it appears there is a catch. TheVerge claims the QR code chat log transfer “only works between devices running the same operating system, so Android to Android or iOS to iOS.” If you want to move your data from, say, a Samsung Galaxy phone to an iPhone or vice versa, you’ll have to head over to WhatsApp’s Help Center for instructions on how to do so.

We asked Meta to confirm if this is true. We’ll update this story at a later time.

Availability

Meta is currently rolling out the Chat Transfer tool in waves to all its users. Be sure to keep an eye out for the patch once it arrives. No word if there are plans to add a similar feature to the desktop version of WhatsApp.

If any of this sounds familiar to you, that’s because WABetaInfo first revealed the update back in early May when it was only available to beta testers. The publication has since shown off other interesting changes coming to WhatsApp. For instance, a WhatsBeta beta on Android from late May introduces screen-sharing for video calls, which you can activate right after installation and try out with others. There are also plans to introduce multi-account support to the platform giving people a way to swap between profiles on the same smartphone.

While we have you, be sure to check out TechRadar's list of the best secure smartphones for June 2023.

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How I found today’s Wordle answer #256 – spoilers and hints for an easy win

Welcome back to my weekday Wordle Answer Diary, where I take you step-by-step through my own Wordle puzzle efforts. In this entry, we're tackling Today's Wordle #256.

For those unfamiliar with Wordle, The New York Times’ (recently-purchased) daily word game asks you to guess a five-letter word in six tries.  Simple right?

If you just want to skip to the today's Wordle answer, (and yes, we have a page to do just that), you can depart right now. But what would be the fun in that? 

You want to preserve your streak and learn how to get better at Wordle, which means making smart choices and understanding the tactics that can take you from a “Winning in Five” to a “Solved in Tree” kind of Wordle player.

The guide below includes how I make my guesses and images of my work. When I make a mistake, you'll see it. Maybe it'll help you avoid some of your own.

Let's Wordle together.

Spoiler Alert: If you do not want to know today’s Wordle answer, STOP READING IMMEDIATELY.

All bets are off

This game is increasingly starting to feel like a daily edition of “Is that even a word?”

Four tries to solve Wordle is respectable, but where did they even get yesterday's solution of RUPEE (Wordle 255)? 

Still, if there's one thing I've learned about Wordle over these months is that it's not Groundhog Day, a banal repetition that ends in the same result. Every day is literally a different word. 

They might start the same (your favorite opening word) but it will wildly veer off the path after that. It's why I still love Wordle.

Chastened by a rough go of it yesterday, I head back to the board, ready to guide you and me through what I hope will be a better Wordle journey.

Wordle Guesses

The Wordle start screen (Image credit: Future)

The first word and a good start

Your biggest leap will always be that first word. I can choose any five-letter word but, generally, dismiss anything with double letters, as per our guide on how to win at Wordle

There are two goals: Get as many correct letters in the right spots as possible and miraculously guess the word on the first try. Thus far, I've never accomplished the latter.

A word pops into my head: “RACES.” I know, it's perilously close to “FACES,” but I like that not only do I get a pair of decent vowels, there are three really solid consonants in there that could start a word, fill its middle, or anchor the end.

Since this is the jump-off point, I'll get right to the result.

Two letters always sting of defeat, but that one of them is in the right spot (green!) cheers me. That “A” is like a strong root that goes deep in the Wordle ground. We now know the Wordle solution is an open-sounding word, likely with a plosive consonant right before it. On the other hand, that correct “S” doesn't belong there and could slide right to the front.

First word result

(Image credit: Future)

Solve or build

If you're like me, your second Wordle attempt is an important fork in the road. Two letters, especially one in the right spot, is a decent foundation, but if we're being honest here, it's not enough to make even an educated guess.

Seriously, I want to guess. One word that popped into my head is “TASKS.” Wordle's penchant for double letters is well known, but a simple pluralization does feel out of character.

So this is the choice we face: Make a guess or gather more letters with something completely different (a tactic not possible in Wordle's Hard Mode, which forces you to use letters guessed accurately in subsequent guesses).

In the end, I go with WOUND to collect one or two more letters and try for the “done in three” guess.

Second word guess

(Image credit: Future)

Little progress

Gathering just a single letter in the wrong spot is somewhat crushing.

I know have “A,” “S,” and “N” to work with. Glad I didn't go with 'TASKS.”

The word in question could start with an “S,” but with the “A” locked in that second slot, all the “ST” words are out of the running. I still have a feeling about “T” and that it belongs at the start. If that's the case, though, we have something that sounds like “TANS…” And that's not adding up to much of a word.

This is, as always, the moment for deep thought and off-board word-jumbles. I may start typing a letter combo on the Wordle board but won't commit until I feel confident I'm one “Enter” away from winning.

By the way, yes, I see the “SANTA” possibility, but Wordle generally doesn't use proper names as solutions.

Second word  result

(Image credit: Future)

Deep breaths

Here I go with another double-letter word combo. “NASAL.”

There is a reason to fear the double letter attempt: You use up a valuable letter-learning position. Still I have a feeling.

Second word  result

(Image credit: Future)

Good news, bad news

It's rare to guess three letters in the correct positions and still fail to solve Today's Wordle. I should be pleased, but feel defeated. It's been so long since I've “Solved in Three.”

Double letters are now less likely, and I am glad I didn't follow my “T” start heart. However, the notion of a “T” puts another five-letter word in my head: “NASTY.”

It's a good word, right? But before I commit, I work through other possible letter combinations. “NAS” significantly cuts down the permutations, especially since I no longer have the whole alphabet to work with.

After a couple of minutes, though, I see that nothing else really makes sense. 

I hit “Enter.”

Fourth word attempt

(Image credit: Future)

A calculated win

Well, look at that, I was right about “T” all along. 

This is how it should go. Sure, some may criticize me because I couldn't Wordle in Three, but I know that I took the right path. An earlier solution would've been more luck than skill, right?

See you tomorrow.

Fourth word result

(Image credit: Future)

Fourth word result

(Image credit: Future)

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MusicMatch makes it easy to share music between streaming services

If you've ever felt frustrated trying to open a shared link from a music streaming service you don't use, you're not alone. But sharing the next best Holly Humberstone song doesn't have to be difficult. A new app, launching today (December 12), is making it easier than ever to share and play your favorite tracks.

MusicMatch, developed by Patrick Hardy and Arthur Van Siclen, is a free app now available on iPhones running iOS 15. The app allows music lovers to open shared song links in either Spotify or Apple Music within the app. You can also play song links utilizing a Safari extension, without opening the MusicMatch app.

While the app sounds simple enough, we spoke to Hardy and Van Siclen to find out what motivated them to develop MusicMatch. Here's what we know about this new music app.

How to use MusicMatch

MusicMatch is free in the App store and available to download for devices running iOS 15. Copy your song, album, or artist link to your clipboard and then open the MusicMatch app. Select where the link will open, whether Apple Music or Spotify.

A Safari extension will provide the same convenience, but within the Safari web browser. To enable this, go to Settings > Safari > Extensions > MusicMatch > Enable All Websites > Enable MusicMatch.

MusicMatch on iOS 15

(Image credit: MusicMatch)

At this time, only links from Spotify that open in Apple Music will work with the Safari extension, but Hardy and Van Siclen are working on making Apple Music links work in Spotify on the web browser as well.

Where does MusicMatch fit on iOS?

As far as creating the app, Van Siclen handled the design and development of MusicMatch while Hardy focused on the integration of Spotify, Apple Music, and the Safari extension.

We asked them why they created the app in the first place.

“I’ve clicked so many Spotify links, found the song or artist name, then searched on Apple Music so many times. Every day.” Van Siclen explains.” Every time someone sends me a link I have to go through those steps. It’s onerous. I’m almost mad thinking about it now.” 

“Arthur and I have been sharing music with each other for years, but Arthur has always been on Apple Music and I've always preferred Spotify. We would go through the process looking up a track on the other's service then searching for that same content on another platform.” Hardy continues. “When Apple announced that Safari Extensions would be available on iOS 15, we realized that there was a pathway to make this process painless and automatic. We knew the pain first hand and were sure it would be useful to a lot of people who share music with their friends.”

MusicMatch iOS 15

(Image credit: MusicMatch)

While the app is a simple way of opening a music link, the two developers also discovered Safari Extensions on iOS 15 as another use-case for MusicMatch.

“When we heard about Safari Extensions coming to iOS we quickly identified this as an opportunity to solve this problem once and for all.” Van Siclen continues. “We made the Safari Extension, but understanding that extensions are kind of an esoteric, “pro” thing to set up, we decided to make the app fully functional itself. That was a good decision – my mom was able to use the app the first time she needed it.”

To macOS and beyond?

It’s only the first day of the app’s launch, but Hardy and Van Siclen aren’t stopping there. As you will see music links shared to you on other devices such as a Mac, there’s plenty of use cases where MusicMatch can help.

“Yes, we architected the app with cross-platform applications in mind,” Hardy explains. “We would love for MusicMatch to solve this problem no matter where customers are at. Our iOS app is just the start.” 

“MusicMatch will soon come to macOS as both an app and Safari Extension. It is built with SwiftUI and has great access to Apple’s modern cross-platform infrastructure.” Van Siclen adds.

Safari 15 in macOS 12 Monterey

(Image credit: Apple)

But if you only have an iPhone, the two devs have plans for a future update on iOS.

“We’re also excited to add support for Tidal, YouTube Music, Pandora, and the other popular streaming services.” Van Siclen continues. “The key goal we identified is to be reliable, so for the first few updates we are focused on ensuring MusicMatch does its job flawlessly for everyone.”

Finally, we wanted to know if Hardy and Van Siclen were big music users on iOS.

“Yes! I listen to jazz, and when we work together, we put on London Grammar, Javiera Mena, Kamasi Washington, and a lot of cross-genre artists.” Van Siclen explains.

“Music has always played an important role in our lives.” Hardy adds. “Sharing music that's inspiring, songs to practice on the guitar, or artists to learn from has always been at the core of a rich and connected life for us.”

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