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Changing your Signal number no longer wipes out your message history

That’s a big step for the secure messenger to be more user friendly.

signal app blurred background
Image: KnowTechie

Signal now lets you change the phone number associated with your account without losing all of your chats, groups, and messages. The new feature is rolling out on iOS and Android right now.

It’s aimed at users who want to keep their existing handset while moving to a new phone number. That could be for any number of reasons, including not wanting to keep the same phone number all of the time.

After all, the main reason people use Signal is that it’s an end-to-end encrypted messenger, so nobody can see your message content.

It definitely seems like a good thing to me that you can change your phone number, without losing what could be years of messages.

Using the new feature is super straightforward. All you need is your old number and the new one, and then go through the normal registration process for the new number.

signal change number
Image: KnowTechie

The really cool thing here is that once you change your phone number, Signal will give your contacts a heads-up.

An automated message will turn up in every currently open thread that lets them know of the change, with a link to update the number in their contacts. That’s pretty neat, and something that other messenger programs should take note of.

If you’re upgrading your device to a new handset, but keeping your same number, Signal has an inbuilt local data transfer feature that will be of more use to you.

Have any thoughts on this? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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Maker, meme-r, and unabashed geek with nearly half a decade of blogging experience at KnowTechie, SlashGear and XDA Developers. If it runs on electricity (or even if it doesn't), Joe probably has one around his office somewhere, with particular focus in gadgetry and handheld gaming. Shoot him an email at joe@knowtechie.com.

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