WhatsApp Status, the feature which was introduced in 2017 as the company’s take on Snapchat Stories, has received a number of updates to make it more attractive and engaging for users. One of the latest additions is the ability to set voice notes as status updates.
On Tuesday, WhatsApp announced Voice Status, which allows users to record and share voice messages of up to 30 seconds as status updates. Users will have the option to record voice notes by tapping the microphone icon on the status screen. It provides a more personal touch to status updates and works as a convenient option for those who prefer not to type or use graphics. Last month WhatsApp tested its voice status feature with its Android and iOS beta testers.
The voice status comes months after WhatsApp saw significant traction in voice messages on its platform. The Meta-owned messaging app said in March that its users send an average of 7 billion voice messages a day.
The arrival of voice notes on WhatsApp status updates reminds us of the Cappuccino app, which allows users to share short, intimate audio stories with friends.
Alongside voice status, WhatsApp’s latest status updates include a “private audience selector” that lets users easily choose a per-status privacy option to choose who can see their status updates. A new audience selection button appears on the status screen – it opens a menu to allow users to control the visibility of their status updates. The most recent audience selection will be saved and used as the default for the next status update, the messaging app said in a blog post.
Before the audience selection option, users had to manually access WhatsApp’s privacy settings to choose who could see their status.
WhatsApp has also expanded the availability of status reactions which were available to some users a few months ago. Users can quickly respond to any status updates by swiping and tapping on one of eight emojis.
Similar to Status Reactions, WhatsApp has expanded the availability of Status Profile Ringtones to all users – having made them available to some users in the recent past. These rings appear around your contact’s profile picture when they share a status update – it works a bit like on Instagram. Status profile rings will be visible in chat lists, group participant lists, and contact information.
Users also get link previews on their WhatsApp status updates. This will allow them to showcase a visual preview of their links to Instagram posts or YouTube videos they’ve put on their status.
The updates have started rolling out to users around the world and will be available to everyone in the coming weeks, the messaging app said.
Last month, WhatsApp released its native macOS client in a public beta. The app also launched its official proxy support for global users a few weeks ago to help people communicate if their internet connection is restricting connectivity with WhatsApp.
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