New Signal update lets you change your phone number without losing chats and groups

New Signal update lets you change your phone number without losing chat history and groups
Secure chat app Signal has been working on enriching the user experience with some quite useful updates recently. A new update to the popular encrypted instant messaging app will now make it possible for you to change the registered phone number without losing current chats, reports 9to5Mac.

Signal gets a long-anticipated feature that allows you to change phone number and still keep conversations

As some of you may probably know, Signal conversations are end-to-end encrypted, and because of that, the app links the user's chats to their phone number, and chats are not synchronized to the cloud for privacy reasons (as it is, Signal is a privacy-focused chat app after all). However, if the user needs to change their phone number, all conversations from the previous number are lost.

That's where the latest Signal update comes in. The messaging app is now introducing a new way to let you update your phone number without having to create a new account and thus lose all your chats and conversation history, as well as profile information and groups.

The new Change Number feature will work if you're keeping your existing phone, but just getting a new number. It will let you keep your profile and all existing messages and groups on the device, while at the same time making you reachable at your new phone number.

If you want to change the phone number registered in your Signal account, you must have access to both the old and new phone numbers. That is needed so you can confirm the change. On top of that, you will need to have the old number enabled on Signal before you can update your account.

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Once the change has been made, all your Signal contacts will be notified about it in their respective chat window with you.

The new Change Number feature requires Signal version 5.27.1 on iOS and version 5.30.6 on Android.

How to change phone number on Signal with the new feature

Here's how to change your phone number using Change Number on Signal. Keep in mind this action cannot be undone.

  1. In Signal, tap your profile > Settings (iOS only) > Account > Change Phone Number
  2. Select Continue
  3. Enter your old number in the first field and your new number in the second field
  4. Select Continue or Done
  5. Confirm the new number is correct (or Edit Number if it needs to be edited)
  6. Select Change Number
  7. Follow the instructions to complete the registration process

In case you don't have access to Signal with your own number, you will have to delete your account to wipe the message history and then register for a new account with the new number.

Signal is one of the most secure instant messaging apps right now

Signal's popularity skyrocketed last year when (as some of you may remember) WhatsApp had a pretty controversial attempt at changing its privacy policy, and thus had many people abandoning it to join Signal and Telegram. Fun fact, the change was so sudden at the time that Signal's servers crashed from the large number of people jumping ship.

Since then, however, things have been going smoothly for Signal as it adapted to its wider user base and started including more and more features to improve and enhance the user experience with the app.

Another secure instant messaging app that earned many users because of WhatsApp's scandal was Telegram, which has also grown tremendously since it all started last year.

Signal is now undergoing some internal changes with the new year, and recently it was announced the company will be changing its CEO.

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