WhatsApp is immensely popular around the world. In a survey conducted on chat applications by BI intelligence in 2016 Whatsapp was by far the leader with a staggering 58% share of the worldwide market. It has 1.2 billion active users each month and caters to about 50 different languages. In India alone it has around 200 million users.
There is a reason Facebook was quick to buy the app for a staggering 19 billion dollars and many people questioned the decision back then. But it seems to be worth it. There is a reason for the app’s continual success- Its frequent updates, which make it user friendlier. However this new update is something special and would be a sigh of relief for many frequent messenger users. Let’s have a look.
The delete for everyone feature
One conundrum many users face in chat messaging is sending a message by accident without any chance of taking it back. Although not formally stated but many app companies felt this was an area of focus- and it led to many messenger apps like Viber, WeChat and Telegram to include a delete message feature which can allow a user to delete the message they sent by accident before the receiver has a chance to read it.
This functionality of recalling or delete the message was much needed for a messenger as widely used as Whatsapp. However there is a catch: The message can only be recalled if the other person hasn’t seen it. The double blue tick means the other party has read the message and then it cannot be deleted or recalled.
The nitty gritty of it
The recall feature will allow users to recall or delete sent messages but only within seven minutes of sending it. The user has to tap and hold the message or multiple messages if they wish to delete them. A recall or delete option will appear. This option works not only for word messages but also images, videos, documents and GIFs. Upon deletion the other person will see a status that reads “This message was deleted”.
The recall feature had been in the works for months and even now it is just in the testing phase. Once the software has been rendered bug free and tested enough it shall be opened to the public. Chances are that the new WhatsApp version-2.17.30 will contain this feature and it should be compatible with both android and apple. This would also mean that for the feature to work both the sender and recipient should have the same upgraded, latest software.
New software developments
As with any mass used product there are many orbiting companies and developers trying to make an upgrade even more user friendly. Android Jefe, a developer is already working on a feature that can allow you to change the time on your phone’s clock and enable you to recall messages that were sent much before seven minutes- perhaps even days and weeks. This implies that the delete for everyone feature is being keenly watched by industry insiders and very soon the seven minute threshold would also be breached.
The delete for everyone feature was a much needed component. Embarrassing drunk messages, videos sent by accident to a different person, an accidently sent GIF on a large group are all concerns of chat application users and it is time it is taken care of. This update hands authority to the user and allows for a better, more fluid chat experience.