As rumored, WhatsApp has now officially started testing verified business accounts on its platform. While overtly keeping its promise of making the service ad-free, the new measure could be advertising in disguise. The Facebook-owned company says that it is ‘exploring ways for you to communicate with the businesses that matter to you’. Here’s how it plans to do it. Also Read - WhatsApp COVID-19 relief efforts: How you can get resources during the pandemicAlso Read - Good news! Jio users can now check COVID-19 vaccine slots on WhatsApp - here's how
Some business accounts on WhatsApp have been verified, which basically means, such accounts will have the familiar tick badge in green next to the contact name. Accounts with such badges have been verified by WhatsApp as those belonging to business profiles. Also Read - Facebook smartwatch to feature cameras alongside fitness functions: Yes, detachable cameras!
At present, BookMyShow is one of the services which is part of WhatsApp’s beta program for verified profiles. Once you start talking to a business account, which has been verified by WhatsApp, you will also get a prompt telling you that you are chatting with a business account. Although WhatsApp’s FAQ section says there is no way to delete these messages, in our test, the prompt message did not show up in the chat. This could be because the responses on BookMyShow WhatsApp account are automated, and also because the feature is still in a testing mode. ALSO READ: Hackers offered $500,000 bounty for discovering vulnerabilities in Signal and WhatsApp
Going forward, if your mobile number is registered with WhatsApp as a business number, you will get to have the green badge next to your name. However, people in your list will still see your contact name as they have saved it in their address book. For example, if you have a business number for XYZ Enterprises, but people in your contact list have saved the number with your name, it will reflect the same way and not with the name of your company. However, if you reach out to people who do not have your number saved in their address book, they will be shown the name of your business. This will essentially help people identify spam messages (read ads).
To stop receiving messages from businesses, you can also choose to block them by tapping on their names, and selecting block contact. At the moment, WhatsApp business verification is limited to a small number of business participating in the pilot program. However, it won’t be long before the feature is rolled out for all businesses to tap on the 200 million monthly active users in India.