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WhatsApp in 2020: Multi-device support, self-destructing messages, new dark mode bubble color and other new features

WhatsApp has emerged as one of the most widely used messaging service during this pandemic. While its usage goes up, the service continues to refine and add new features. Here is a look at some of the features coming soon.

  • Published: June 15, 2020 4:29 PM IST
WhatsApp on multiple devices phones, WhatsApp features

WhatsApp has become an indispensable source of communication during the lockdown. It has been the place where people connect with their friends, family and even colleagues. With its group video calling and voice call feature, WhatsApp is definitely on top of the pack when it comes to social messaging services. It is also the place where people share news with their friends. With over two billion monthly active users, WhatsApp has always pushed itself towards adding new features. Also Read - TikTok beats WhatsApp and Facebook in usage in rural India: Report

The goal for Facebook-owned WhatsApp has been simple: offer secure communication in different ways to its users. Recently, we saw WhatsApp increase the group video call limit. It also delivered dark mode to billions of its users across platforms. To limit spread of false news, WhatsApp also restricted frequently forwarded messages. If you are wondering what else can WhatsApp add to the platform then the answer is a lot. Here is a look at some of the new features coming to the service. Also Read - WhatsApp denies leaking mobile number of users in plaintext

Multi-device support

One of the big new features coming to WhatsApp soon is the multi-device support. As the name is self explanatory, the feature will allow you to login to multiple devices with the same account at once. Currently, WhatsApp let’s users login to only one device at a time. As soon as you login on another device, it logs you out from the second client. Going forward, WhatsApp might let you have a single account logged in to multiple devices. This would be a game changer in terms of user experience. WABetaInfo has reported that the feature has been in testing for some time. Also Read - PSA: WhatsApp scam is asking users for their verification codes and it's fake

WhatsApp QR code

WhatsApp is also looking to allow users to add contacts by scanning a QR code. This is expected to work similar to Snapchat, where users scan Snap codes to connect. This would be a departure from the existing method, which relies on you knowing the contact number of the other person to connect on the messaging platform. It is already available in the beta version of Android and iOS. The wider roll out is expected to begin soon.

Self-destructing messages

In some ways, this can be described as one of the most requested features on WhatsApp. The idea is similar to Snapchat, where messages disappear once the user has seen them. However, in the case of WhatsApp, you will have the option to set a time limit for this activity. This feature has been in the works for quite some time. It has even been renamed to Delete Messages and is expected to roll out as part of stable release soon.

Last seen for select friends

While new features always excite users, WhatsApp also seems to be working on tweaking existing ones. For example, it plans to add an additional option to “Last Seen” activity data. As an update, WhatsApp plans to let users share their last seen status with select friends. The transition will happen from the current setting where you can choose to share last seen with contacts, everyone or no one. But the new planned toggle will add another dimension to this data sharing.

In-app browser and Search by date

WhatsApp is also planning to add an in-app browser to the application. This means, when you get a link, you can see it right inside WhatsApp and not leave the messaging app. This could be done in conjunction with Chrome on Android and Safari on iOS. This will minimize the amount of time it takes to load an article or any content shared via a browser link. WhatsApp is also testing a feature where users will be able to search by date. WABetaInfo reports that the feature is under development and should be available soon. The feature is still an alpha stage development and might take longer to become available on devices. It may not be limited to one platform and we see it being available on both Android and iOS.

Storage and Dark Mode bubble color

Another tool being tested by WhatsApp is related to storage. The idea, according to WABetaInfo, is to give users more storage options as part of a redesign. This is the section that allows users to manage their messages and chat in detail. Also in the offing is a new bubble color for the dark mode. The messaging platform is planning to change the color for the outgoing bubble when the dark mode is enabled. It is not clear why WhatsApp is even experimenting with this new color option.

ShareChat video, search image

ShareChat is a popular social platform for sharing content including photos and videos. WABetaInfo reports that WhatsApp is planning to add a dedicated player for the service on its platform. This means, whenever the feature becomes official, you will see a preview for the ShareChat video similar to YouTube videos. It is planning to add a feature where users will be able to search images on the web. It is already enabled with iOS beta and should be rolled out to all users soon.

WhatsApp clear option

Another feature in the works is an option to clear all but starred messages. WhatsApp already let’s users delete all messages but the starred ones. It seems that the same idea is being extended to storage as well. You will be able to clear all but starred messages. This could mean that a lot of WhatsApp users do use starred messages.

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  • Published Date: June 15, 2020 4:29 PM IST

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