Brazilian consumer association Proteste told Facebook the discontinuation of WhatsApp on certain old devices hurts consumer rights and called on the tech giant to reverse its decision, Veja reported.
In 2016, WhatsApp announced it would end support for certain mobile platforms, then decided to extend backing for BlackBerry OS, BlackBerry 10, Nokia S40 and Nokia Symbian S60 until 30 June 2017.
At the time it said in a blog post: “While these mobile devices have been an important part of our story, they don’t offer the kind of capabilities we need to expand our app’s features in the future.”
“This was a tough decision for us to make, but the right one in order to give people better ways to keep in touch with friends, family, and loved ones using WhatsApp. If you use one of these affected mobile devices, we recommend upgrading to a newer Android, iPhone, or Windows Phone.”
BlackBerry stated it was “extremely disappointed” WhatsApp ended compatibility with its BlackBerry 10 platform.
Now, as the date of the change nears, Proteste said it believes the measure is unfair, as devices running the platforms named by WhatsApp are still used by operators in Brazil.
The association’s director of Institutional Relations, Henrique Lian, said even if only a few consumers are affected, it is not right to ask them to buy new devices.
Proteste previously objected to a government ban of WhatsApp, which is used by 100 million people in the country. In 2016, a Brazilian appeals court judge overturned the ban a day after another judge asked operators to block the service.
The initial judge wanted the messaging app maker to hand over information in a criminal investigation, despite CEO Jan Koum “repeatedly” stating the firm did not have the information the court wanted, due to end-to-end encryption of all messages.