What is Exporting a chat in WhatsApp? | Explained

Do you know how to export WhatsApp chats and what is it for? We tell you all the details here

In WhatsApp, there are different tools to save your chats and conversations. Whether you are going to change mobile and want to take all your chats, or if you are going to delete your account or uninstall the application and need a record of everything said. This is the case of exporting. But what is exporting a chat in WhatsApp, how do you do it, what can you use it for? Here we explain all this so that you do not lose a single message of your conversations through this messaging application.

To answer you what is exporting a chat in WhatsApp I have to talk about the backups that WhatsApp makes daily. It is a copy that is stored daily locally in the memory of your mobile with each and every one of the new messages that you exchange in all your chats. In addition, it is possible to take these backups to Google Drive, in case you have an Android mobile, or iCloud if you have an iPhone. Well, these backups serve to keep a backup of your chats, but also to export copies outside WhatsApp. Something like having a record of conversations that you can read, provide as evidence, save for posterity, or whatever you need without being in WhatsApp.

When you export a WhatsApp chat what you get is a file in .txt or text format where you can read each of the messages exchanged. It is a flat format that you can review on your computer. And that takes up relative space to be able to send it by email, for example. It is very useful to save this copy as a file in a folder on your computer. And, if properly checked by a computer scientist, it can be useful for legal proceedings to prove some action, comment, or conversation.

How to export a chat in WhatsApp

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The process is really simple. But, yes, there are certain limitations when exporting WhatsApp chats that you should know:

  • Limitation on the number of messages: By default, and for logistical reasons, WhatsApp only allows you to collect up to 40 thousand messages from a group conversation or individual chat. However, if we choose to export also the most recent multimedia files (messages, photos, and videos), the number of messages in this copy is reduced to the most current 10 thousand.
  • Not all multimedia files: The capacity of WhatsApp backups, and especially the limitations when sending these copies via email, means that the files have a reduced size. This means not being able to store all those photos, videos, audios and other multimedia elements shared by WhatsApp. Only the most recent ones.

Well, with this clear, and knowing that you can export both individual and group chats, it only remains to know how to do it. Here we tell you to step by step:

  • Go to the chat you want to export in WhatsApp. You know, individual or any group.
  • Click on the three dots in the upper right corner.
  • Click on the More option in the drop-down menu to find Export Chat.
  • Choose, in the screen that appears, if you want to include the media files or not. This will increase the final size of the exported copy.
  • Choose where to send the .txt file with the exported copy. WhatsApp allows you to send it via email, but also through WhatsApp itself, via Bluetooth to another device, or even save it to Google Drive or any cloud you have access to from your mobile.

With this, you will already have the .txt file with all the messages (and multimedia content if you have so chosen) to review any of your chats. Even after uninstalling WhatsApp.

How to view an exported chat in WhatsApp

Now that you have your copy or exported chat you may ask yourself the following question: how to view an exported chat in WhatsApp. Well, there are several answers. On the one hand, you should know that, if you do not uninstall or delete that chat in WhatsApp, you can continue reading and reviewing everything shared in the conversation from the application without problems. Everything will still be there after exporting it.

Although the interesting thing is, without a doubt, being able to read that exported file at any time and place. The good thing is that the .txt file format is completely standardized, and any computer with Windows or Mac will be able to open it by default and without any problem. Just don’t expect endless screenshots. The text format is plain text, showing the time and name of the person writing the message and the content of the message. All in chronological order, of course. But without any kind of ornament or design to help its readability.

So, it is recommended that you open it with any text editor. From the default that comes in the main operating systems on the market, such as Microsoft Word. If you are using a computer.

 There are also mobile applications capable of opening and editing .txt files. You can search for them in Google Play Store and the App Store, with free options. This way. If you export or save the copy on your mobile, you can open and review it at any time with one of these apps. And all this without the need to have WhatsApp installed.

How to save WhatsApp conversations

Now, if your doubt in all this aspect is how to save WhatsApp conversations, know that you have several options at your fingertips. Tools that will not always be valid in a trial unless your terminal is expertly tested by a computer expert. But they can leave a testimony of things said in chats. These are the different ways you have to save WhatsApp conversations.

  • Screenshots: these are mere snapshots of conversations, but they can record important parts of these. They are usually done with the off button plus the volume down button or from the mobile shortcuts.
  • Backups: These are the backups that WhatsApp can make daily of each of the messages. So, if you change your mobile or lose the previous one, you will be able to recover most of the messages again when you install WhatsApp with your same number. Of course, you will not be able to read the messages through the copy file. And you can only recover them if you keep your phone number.
  • Export a chat: this is the most convenient and effective way to save your conversations. You will have a plain text file (.txt) that you can save anywhere and open to review at any time and from most devices.
  • Copy and paste messages: this is a variation of exporting chats. It consists of selecting all the messages you want to keep and pasting them in some document or place where you can save text: an email, another WhatsApp message, a text document, a note… Of course, it will never be an entire conversation, unless you have enough patience to mark all the messages in it.

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