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Getting a phone number to use with Hilos

In order to use Hilos you'll need to have a phone number for your business that will be linked to your WhatsApp Business API account. This number will be used to send and receive messages from your customers. There are 3 ways to get a phone number to use with Hilos:

Buy a new number

Buying a new number is the easiest and recommended way to get started with Hilos as this number is not yet associated with a WhatsApp account. This means that you'll be able to use it right away.

There are many ways to get a new number, here are some of the most popular ones:

  • Buy a new SIM card from a local carrier (e.g. AT&T, Verizon, etc.)
  • Buying a Digital number from a VoIP provider (e.g. Twilio, Vonage, DIDWW, Google Voice, Skype, etc.)

Whichever you choose, make sure that the number you buy is capable of receiving voice calls or SMS, this is required for the verification process.

tip

If you need help buying a new number, you can follow our guide on how to buy a new number with Twilio.

Migrate from another BSP

If you are already using WhatsApp Business API with another BSP you can migrate your number to Hilos. We can migrate your current number from your current BSP (Twilio, MessageBird, etc.) to Hilos.

We use 360Dialog as our BSP to be able to use your phone number and WhatsApp account with Hilos as they have a very easy to use migration tool. Keep in mind that both the quality rating of the number and its templates will be migrated.

danger

Any existing chat history will be lost in the migration.

If you choose this method and need help, don't hesitate to arrange a call with us and we'll help you migrate your number to Hilos.

Use an existing number

You might be tempted to use an existing number that you are already using on your phone with WhatsApp or WhatsApp Business, however there are a few caveats to this approach:

  • The WhatsApp account needs to be deleted before you can link it to your WhatsApp Business API account.
  • Facebook hasn't yet provided an official way to migrate your chat history from WhatsApp to WhatsApp Business API, so you'll lose all of your chat history.
  • There is no way back, once you delete your WhatsApp account you can't use it again on any of the WhatsApp apps.
danger

Use this method if you wish to use a number that your customers are familiar with already but don't care about losing your chat history. If you choose this approach make sure to export your important chat history or make a backup on Google Drive or iCloud before deleting your WhatsApp account. Be mindful that this action cannot be undone and there is no way to recover your chat history.

Another approach is to use the number that you use for inbound or outbound calls on your business. However keep in mind that if you're using an IVR menu, it might need to be temporarily disabled during verification for receiving the verification code.

Deleting your WhatsApp account

You might be wondering, why do I need to delete my WhatsApp account if I'm already using WhatsApp Business?

Though from an outside perspective WhatsApp Business and Whatsapp API might look the same, reality is that they are two different products. On one hand we have the WhatsApp Business app, which is a standalone app that you can use to manage your business account. However when it comes to Business Functionality it might be quite limited, for example you cannot use the same number on two different whatsapp apps and you cannot run automations.

On the other hand we have WhatsApp Business API, which is the official set of APIs offered by WhatsApp to bigger businesses, which you can use to integrate WhatsApp into an existing app or system (like Hilos).

The reason you need to delete your WhatsApp account is that a phone number can only be associated to one WhatsApp product at a time (either WhatsApp App, WhatsApp Business App or WhatsApp API), therefore the WhatsApp Account needs to be deleted before attempting to migrate to WhatsApp API.

Exporting your important chats for future reference

In order to make a backup of your chat history you'll need to follow these steps:

  1. Open WhatsApp (or WhatsApp Business)

  2. Go to settings

    info

    Settings can be found under the 3 dots in the top right corner of the screen on Android or under the Settings icon at the bottom on iOS.

    Tap on settings
  3. Tap on Chats

Tap on chats
  1. Tap on Export chat
Tap on export chat
  1. Choose the chat you'd like to export
Tap on export chat
  1. Select wether you'd like to include media or not
Select to attach media or not
  1. Send the backup through your desired method (e.g. to your email)
Send your backup to your email

Deleting your account

In order to link your existing phone number to WhatsApp API first you'll need to delete your account. If you are already using WhatsApp on your phone you can delete your account by following these steps:

  1. Open WhatsApp (or WhatsApp Business)
  2. Go to SettingsTap on settings
  3. Tap on AccountTap on account
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Please be sure you've made a backup or exported any important chat history before deleting your account. This action cannot be undone.

  1. Tap on Delete my account
Tap on delete account
  1. Enter your number and tap on Delete my accountDelete your account