Contacts

/v1/contacts

Use the contacts node to manage WhatsApp users in your database by validating them before sending messages and verify a user's identity with identity hashes.

With the contacts node you can:

  • Verify that a phone number in your database belongs to a valid WhatsApp account. You must ensure that the status is valid before you can message a user.
  • Get the WhatsApp ID for a phone number. WhatsApp IDs are needed to send messages and user notifications.

Edges

The following edges are connected to this node:

EdgeDescription

/{user-whatsapp-id}/identity

Use this edge to manage users' identities. See Understanding Identity Change for WhatsApp Business for more information.

Before You Start

You must present an option to your customers to opt-in to WhatsApp communications with your business. This opt-in flow is maintained by your business. After a customer opts-in, use the contacts node to validate the registered number. See Understanding How to Get Opt-in for WhatsApp for more information.

Constraints

  • If you check too many phone numbers without sending messages to them, you will be banned. Only check only phone numbers critical to your business for which you have already received customer opt-in.
  • At this time, there is no callback to inform you when a WhatsApp user joins or leaves the network, so you must check contacts frequently.

Creating

Before sending messages to users who have opted in, send a POST API call to /v1/contacts to create a WhatsApp account user validation request. In your call, include a list of phone numbers you want to validate.

Example

Send an API call to /v1/contacts containing an array of registered phone numbers. The phone numbers can be in any standard telephone number format.

POST /v1/contacts
{
  "blocking": "wait" | "no_wait",
  "contacts": [
  	"16315551000",
  	"+1 631 555 1001",
  	"6315551002",
  	"+1 (631) 555-1004",
  	"1-631-555-1005"
  ],
  "force_check": false | true
}

You will receive a response with the current status of the requested numbers and their WhatsApp IDs (wa_id):

{
  "contacts": [ {
    "wa_id": "16315551000",
    "input": "16315551000",
    "status": "valid"
  },
  {
    "wa_id": "16315551001",
    "input": "+1 631 555 1001",
    "status": "processing" # Only applicable when request is non-blocking
  },
  {
    "input": "6315551002",
    "status": "invalid"
  },
  {
    "input": "+163155588",
    "status": "failed"
  }
}

Save the WhatsApp IDs for those numbers that returned a status of valid. Valid users are those with a WhatsApp account. Use the WhatsApp IDs to send messages and notifications.

Repeat these steps on a regular basis to manage your list of valid users. The results are cached in the WhatsApp Business API client's database for 7 days.

Parameters

The following parameters are supported for POST calls to /v1/contacts:

Name Description

blocking

Optional.

Whether the API request should wait for processing to complete or not before returning a response. For more information, read the Blocking section below.


Possible values: no_wait (default), wait

contacts

Required.

Array of phone numbers that you are validating.


The numbers can be in any standard telephone number format. The recommended format for contact phone numbers is with a plus sign (+) and the country code. For more information, see the Phone Number Formats section below.

force_check

Optional.

Whether to check the contacts cache or not. Contact information is normally cached for 7 days. By setting the force_check parameter to true, the cache will be bypassed ensuring a check is performed.


Possible values: false (default), true

Blocking

There are two options for the blocking parameter: no_wait and wait. If the blocking parameter is not specified in a call it is no_wait by default.

The blocking parameter determines whether the request should wait for the processing to complete (synchronous) or not (asynchronous).

SettingDescription

no_wait

The processing of the phone numbers is asynchronous.


The API response may include some numbers with status set to processing. If that happens, we recommend you follow these steps:

  1. You get an API response with some numbers marked as processing.
  2. Issue another check contact request including the numbers with the processing status.
  3. If the processing is done in your new request, you get a correct status for that number (valid or invalid).
  4. If you still see numbers marked as processing, repeat step 2 until you have an answer for each number.

wait

The processing of the numbers is synchronous. You see the final status for all of the contacts after syncing with server. This setting makes the query block wait until the numbers have all been checked before returning results. This might take some time.

Phone Number Formats

The phone numbers in the contacts API request can be in any dialable format.

When there is no plus sign (+) at the beginning of the phone number, the country code is determined using the phone number that your WhatsApp Business API client is registered under, so phone numbers associated with a different country code will fail.

The recommended best practice is to always specify the country code with the phone number and explicitly prefix it with a plus sign (+).

Here are some examples that demonstrate this behavior, assuming the WhatsApp Business API client is registered with an Indian phone number (i.e., country code is +91):

Phone NumberTranslated Phone NumberValid?

"+1-631-555-1002"

"+16315551002"

Yes

"6315551002"

"+916315551002"

No

"1-631-555-1002"

"+9116315551002"

No

"+1 (516) 283-7151"

"+15162837151"

Yes

"+54 9 11 5612-1008"

"+5491156121008"

Yes

Returned Fields

The contacts response payload contains the same array of phone numbers sent in the request with the input, status, and wa_id properties:

Name Description

input

The value you sent in the contacts field of the API call.

status

Status of the user.


Possible values:

  • processing — Input is still being processed
  • valid — A valid WhatsApp user
  • invalid — Not a valid WhatsApp user
  • failed — There was an error processing this check

wa_id

WhatsApp user ID that can be used in other API calls. Only returned if the status is valid

Along with the processing status, you should see an HTTP status of 200 OK. If there are any errors in the response, see Error and Status Messages for more information.

Best Practices

We recommend checking contacts before sending messages, however you do not need to check contacts when responding to incoming customer messages as you can immediately respond using the provided wa_id. There is no additional cost as results are cached.