In light of WhatsApp’s continued refusal to hand over information to the Brazilian judiciary in its investigation of a criminal case, a Brazilian judge has ordered that local phone companies block the app for 72 hours starting today at 2 PM. A similar WhatsApp block occurred in Brazil last December.
Not blocking the app would cost phone companies 500,000 reales per day; however, it seems like the five major providers are avoiding that fee and denying their customers WhatsApp, according to Time.
So once again, about 100 million Brazilians are WhatsApp-less. The impact runs a little deeper than you may think. Brazil faces some of the highest cell phone charges in the world, so WhatsApp is very popular in the country, according to the BBC. Press reports are also reporting the recent block is turning Brazilians onto Telegram, another online messaging service.