Update 23/03/2022: WhatsApp has released the version 18.104.22.168 for beta testers which has fixed the critical crash. You can safely update to the version via the Play Store.
Original Story Below.
WhatsApp is being used by a billion people around the world and when one has a user base that large, it cannot afford to make mistakes such as the one WhatsApp has made. After updating to the latest version, users are complaining of an abrupt crash for the WhatsApp application. We can back the claim as we also faced the same. We are also mentioning a solution for those in the affected population.
Since last evening, users have been complaining of an abrupt crash when opening WhatsApp which renders the app useless. We also faced the same issue in one of our devices where the app fails to open and stops in the background as well. We also could not send any messages or take backups due to the frequent crashes. Not only crashes, but people also complain of incomplete backups.
Users took to Twitter to complain about the issue and WABetaInfo, the feature tracker for WhatsApp, also posted a tweet about the same, thereby confirming the problem. There’s no pattern found yet, so the cause for the issue can be determined. However, users both on stable and beta versions are facing the problem which confirms that the beta channel is not solely affected. We can confirm that some of the affected versions include 22.214.171.124 and 126.96.36.199.
Read More: Is Whatsapp rolling out usernames instead of phone numbers? Find out more
Potential temporary solution
The only potential solution we have been able to find as of now is to install an older version of the app. We installed version 188.8.131.52 on February 10, 2023 and it worked fine. WhatsApp was able to restore the backup without any hiccups, and the app works as it should.
We suggest the readers to not update to the latest version of the app just yet. Once WhatsApp has rolled out a fix for the bug and makes it safe to update, we’ll update the story. Until then, you can downgrade the app and use it.