WhatsApp will not remove any accounts for refusing to accept its new privacy update, but users who do not agree to the terms after "a few weeks" will be unable to access their chat list and, ultimately, will be unable to address incoming phone or video calls via the app.
WhatsApp stated on its website that it is continuing to remind those who haven't had the chance to review and approve the terms and that after a period of several weeks, those who haven't had the chance to do so will be notified, "the reminder (that) people receive will eventually become persistent."
However, it did not reveal the deadlines for these reminders.
WhatsApp explained what happens next when users receive 'persistent' reminders: 'At that time, you'll encounter limited functionality on WhatsApp until you accept the updates,' it said. 'This will not happen to all users at the same time. You won't be able to access your chat list, but you can still answer incoming phone and video calls. If you have notifications enabled, you can tap on them to read or respond to a message or call back a missed phone or video call,' it added.
Users who refuse to accept the terms after a few weeks of limited functionality 'won't be able to receive incoming calls or notifications and WhatsApp will stop sending messages and calls to your phone.'
However, Whatsapp ensured that the user's accounts won't be deleted but existing policy related to inactive users will still apply. Whatsapp accounts, not used beyond 120 days, are generally deleted.
"We'll continue to provide reminders to those users within WhatsApp in the weeks to come. We've spent the last several months providing more information about our update to users around the world. In that time, the majority of people who have received it have accepted the update and WhatsApp continues to grow. However, for those that have not yet had a chance to do so, their accounts will not be deleted or lose functionality on May 15," the Whatsapp spokesperson said.
WhatsApp's biggest market in India, where the company has 53 crore users, according to government reports. With its huge population and growing access to the internet, India remains a crucial market for Internet companies like Facebook. The nation has the world's second-largest telecom market as well as the world's largest data user.