WhatsApp’s beta Apple Silicon Mac app is now available for download to the public through its website. The company has been beta testing its native Mac app through TestFlight for the last few months.
The new app provides a notably better user experience than the existing app of the messaging service. And since it is a native app, it performs much better as well.
Native WhatsApp Mac app with Apple silicon support gets a wider beta release
While the Meta-owned messaging service has been testing Apple silicon support for its Mac app for a few months, the TestFlight beta program has been full for a while. So, new users could not try out the native app even if they wished to.
WhatsApp is now making its Catalyst app available for download directly through its website. Unlike the Electron-based version, the Apple silicon-optimized app looks and behaves like a native Mac app with a dedicated sidebar to switch between chats, calls, archived conversations, starred messages, and the Settings menu. It should also use fewer resources than its Electron sibling.
Unlike the stable Electron WhatsApp version, the Apple silicon app has a yellow logo, signaling its beta status.
WhatsApp’s current Mac app is slow and buggy
WhatsApp’s cexistingMac app is based on Electron and runs on Apple silicon-based Macs through Rosetta 2. Due to this, it delivers a sub-par experience with long loading times. The app also takes a fair bit of time to load large conversations.
You can download WhatsApp’s native Apple silicon app from its website. The app continues to be in beta, so expect to run into some bugs and crashes.
Given WhatsApp’s popularity, it was a shame to see Mac users having to deal with a sub-par app. Thankfully, the wider public release of WhatsApp’s Catalyst app, even in beta, changes that.