So let’s take a look at some of the features that WhatsApp has introduced on Android and iOS in 2020. Also Read - WhatsApp for Android beta developing shortcut to search for stickers
Perhaps the most important feature in this lineup, WhatsApp Payments, was introduced in November 2020 where users can send money directly from their bank accounts to another WhatsApp account using UPI (Unified Payments Interface). A feature that was earlier released in its beta phase back in 2017 took its time to be officially launched in 2020. With WhatsApp Payments the company wants to reach to a large user base in India which has been using other UPI payment platforms like Google Pay, PhonePe and even Paytm.
WhatsApp Disappearing Messages
WhatsApp has been under the radar for the past couple of month due to the celebrity WhatsApp chats that were leaked to news portals. To reassure its users of its security and privacy, the platform launched an additional feature called Disappearing Messages feature which makes chats in a conversation disappear after a certain period of time (7 days as default). A similar feature is already available on existing chat apps like Telegram and Snapchat.
New storage management tools
WhatsApp users receive tons of images, videos, documents and audio clips on their numbers and at times it can be difficult managing all of that data. To tackle this, WhatsApp introduced a new media management tool that categorises the media on WhatsApp as per size, type and whether there are any duplications.
The new storage management tool helps you better manage forwarded media and delete unwanted files. You are also allowed to delete the media sent by an individual chat. The app also shows a section where files over 5MB in size are stored. Users can find the new storage management tool in Settings>Storage & Data>Manage Storage.
WhatsApp Dark Mode
While the entire app universe moved to a more efficient dark mode ecosystem it sure took a long time for WhatsApp to join the bandwagon. Not only does WhatsApp get a new look with the dark mode it also helps your device save up on a lot of battery juice considering that WhatsApp is one of the most-used apps in the day and darker pixels consume less battery. You can enable the dark mode on your device by heading to the Settings menu > Chats > Theme > Dark.
WhatsApp Animated Stickers
Communication is all about expression and WhatsApp made sure you get all the right tools to express yourself by introducing animated stickers. Stickers have been in use for quite a while now where apps like Hike, WeChat among others have been using stickers. In WhatsApp, you get default sticker packs with an option to add more packs by downloading them from the Play Store or App Store.
WhatsApp also introduced features like a limit increase in the number of video/group caller you can have in one call and an advanced search feature where you could specifically filter the kind of file you were searching for on WhatsApp. There have also been rumours that WhatsApp will introduce the video calling feature for the desktop version but it doesn’t seem the feature will be released this year.
WhatsApp continuously strives to make its services better especially at a time when the platform has been facing a lot of flak on social media. With more features expected to hit the platform in 2021 users are hoping that the company can address some of the concerns that have been raised on privacy and security.