Do you still remember the WhatsApp privacy policy?

WhatsApp is growing despite the months-long backlash privacy policy, which most people have forgotten about.

It’s safe to say WhatsApp didn’t have the ideal start to 2021. Less than a week into the new year, the Facebook-owned instant messaging app had already annoyed hundreds of thousands of users with its scary worded notification about a planned policy update. The backlash grew fast and millions of people, including several high-profile figures, started to explore rival apps Signal and Telegram.

Even governments, including India’s — WhatsApp’s biggest market by users — expressed concerns. (In the case of India, also an antitrust probe.) The backlash prompted WhatsApp to offer a series of clarifications and assurances to users, and it also postponed the deadline for enforcing the planned update by three months. Now with the May 15 deadline just a week away.

The vast majority of users that WhatsApp has notified about the planned update in recent months have accepted the update.

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Facebook’s recent earnings call gives us some idea: The company’s family of apps had 3.45 billion monthly active users as of March 31, 2021, up from 3.3 billion on December 31 and 3.21 billion on September 30.

Users who don’t agree to the new terms, won’t lose access to their accounts or any feature on May 15, WhatsApp said. But after an unspecified number of weeks, such users will lose several core functionalities — though not at the same time.

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