WhatsApp Business API vs. WhatsApp Cloud API

WhatsApp Business API and WhatsApp Cloud API are both used by small businesses to enterprises that want to scale their customer communications. They have many similarities and differences in terms of features and functionalities. Knowing how they compare could help you choose the right one for your business needs.

The table below summarizes the key feature and functionality differences and similarities between the two API.

WhatsApp Business APIWhatsApp Cloud API
Who hosts itBusiness Solution Providers (BSPs)Meta
Where is your data hostedRegionally hosted by BSPsNorth America
Price of getting access to it*Cost that each BSP decidesFree**
How to access itFrom BSPsDirectly from Meta
How long it takes to access itA few minutes to weeks depending on your BSPA few minutes
Has an inbox?NoNo
Message types supported
ImageDepends on the BSPYes
VideosDepends on the BSPYes
AudioDepends on the BSPYes
DocumentDepends on the BSPYes
Voice messageDepends on the BSPYes
GifDepends on the BSPYes
Contact Cards
StickerPackDepends on the BSPYes
List MessagesDepends on the BSPYes
Reply Button MessagesDepends on the BSPYes
Single-product messagesDepends on the BSPYes
Multi-product messageDepends on the BSPYes
Text-based message templatesDepends on the BSPYes
Media-based message template (Images, videos and documents)Depends on the BSPYes
Interactive message templatesDepends on the BSPYes
Support you receive
SLADepends on the BSPNo
Disaster RecoveryDepends on the BSPNo
Personalized supportDepends on the BSPNo
How long it takes to get access to new features and functionalities of the APIDepends on the BSPInstantly

* This is the price for getting access to the API only. Businesses must pay for WhatsApp conversation-based pricing and inbox separately.
** Your access to the API is free but to get access to it you need someone with programming knowledge to do it. If you don’t have a technical person on your team, you need to find someone who can do it for you at a cost. Some BSPs provide assistance in getting access to the Cloud API.