WhatsApp with AI integration, channels, and improved privacy features is coming.
Meta is working on several things to bring new features to WhatsApp, and several things are coming to Channels. These features will make things easier for users with the latest update, which you can check. Users can join the waitlist to experiment with Meta’s WhatsApp Beta.
The company has introduced a new feature to improve performance and enhance the user experience, allowing people to use the app more efficiently. Although the rollout of the new app is limited to specific users, the company will soon be rolling out these new features accessible from within the screen.
WhatsApp Beta Update
Many features are still in beta, and you can join the beta to install the update for WhatsApp Beta for Android and iOS devices. So, before trying out these features, update your WhatsApp to the latest version.
Features are under development and will be available in future app updates. Check out these upcoming improvements for these features.
Many development has come to WhatsApp Web and WhatsApp Desktop Beta, which allow users to do more from their desktops. These are still in development on Android, so it will take some time for them to be available on the desktop.
- Sidebar and Group Chat Filter: WhatsApp Web has a new group chat filter feature, allowing users to categorise their conversations easily. They can filter their chats based on specific filters and use the new sidebar to improve navigation. This aims to offer a tool for desktop users to filter their chats based on category.
Meta has announced several AI advancements during their Connect 2023 event. WhatsApp has started integrating artificial intelligence to enhance the user experience and provide several benefits from using AI. Furthermore, with AI, you can enhance messaging customisation by making interactions engaging and fun.
- AI Sticker: Users can now generate stickers by writing the prompt in natural language. You can find this option in the sticker section of the keyboard. There, you will find the AI-Create button. After clicking on it, a text box will open, asking you to enter the prompt and hit Go to proceed. From there, you can choose the sticker you want to send or save it as a favourite to use later.
- AI-Powered Chat: The company has introduced AI-powered chat, which can help users in various ways. This works as an AI assistant called an AI agent. With this, users can communicate and get a preview of how these agents will shape their experience. It is designed to help users experience a new chat experience; however, sometimes, it may generate inaccurate or inappropriate responses.
The company has prioritised open-source technology and using the LLM module LlaMA 2. They also share their progress on how human-computer interaction will play a significant role in realising Mark Zuckerberg’s vision for connected and intelligent social media, including the metaverse.
WhatsApp Channel Update
The company has recently started rolling out the WhatsApp Channel feature to everyone, which you can find under the Status update. They are now adding new functionality to the WhatsApp channel. This feature is aimed at helping creators expand their reach.
You can easily search for channels to find channels and also have the feature to delete channels’ media automatically.
- Status: On Android, the status has been redesigned to align with Material Design 3 guidelines. Numerous enhancements have also been implemented to certain legacy features to improve the user experience when interacting with them. A new option within the WhatsApp Settings called “Add Status.” This feature will offer users some default options, including certain status update features. The company still ensures that the text status will disappear from the user’s profile after a specific time. However, it expands the duration from 24 hours, three days, one week, and two weeks, so the status disappears from the profile when the selected timeframe expires. Furthermore, the company is also working on complying with the new EU regulation by developing third-party chat support, as some users have encountered crashes when replying to the status updates.
- Reaction to Channel Update: Now, users can view and react to the channel update to express their opinions on specific updates shared within the channels.
- Copy Channel Update Link: Users can now copy the link from the channel’s post. When you long-press on the post, it opens a message option. Tap “Copy link” from the message option for the channel update link. With the link, you can immediately open the channel by presenting the message link associated with the channel update, even outside of WhatsApp, and it does not require users to forward the update manually.
- Channel Replies: When WhatsApp added the Channel feature, the comment was missing, but now they have added this feature to react alongside reacting to the channel update. The number of replies will appear on the bottom-right side of the channel update. This feature will surely be handy, allowing users to interact with the channel updates.
- Blue Checkmark: WhatsApp has a green checkmark for the verified channels, which ensures their authenticity. Now, the company is seeking to replace the green checkmark with the blue checkmark for businesses. There are several advancements and benefits to protecting users from impersonation.
- Search-Updates Tab: While ensuring channel enhancements, WhatsApp has removed the Status tab and replaced it with the Update tab in recent updates. This feature helps manage automatically removing channels’ media from the device. In addition, there is a new search button within the top app bar, which helps users with enhanced search for status updates, followed by channels and other verified channels, without requiring users to open the channel directory as it is very complicated. For an optimal user experience, a new filter helps discover new filters.
- Channel Alert: If your channel is closed in a specific country due to a response to local law, which requires the platform to restrict access to certain content within a particular region, In order to comply with these regulations, WhatsApp will try to comply with them. These notifications will be served to channel creation if channel visibility is restricted.
- Community Info: There are new tools to help communities quickly access their community details and settings. Not only this but also making changes to help regular users. It is now more user-friendly for community members.
WhatsApp: New UX and Feature Support
- New Interface: Meta is improving the experience by improving the interface and introducing new icons and colours to modernise it. They are removing the green colour from the top bar and have also introduced new green colours inspired by Material UI 3, which will be the predominant theme colour for both light and dark modes. They have also revamped the chat bubble colour for the dark theme and the floating action button.
- Video Avatar Calling: Meta introduced avatars a while back, and now they are expanding it to video calling. This feature aims to protect users’ privacy by masking their appearance with avatars, allowing users to engage in video calls. Additionally, it adds a personalised touch to conversations by making the interaction more expressive.
- Call Interface: A new calling interface highlights the option to quickly add new participants without interrupting the current call.
- Tab Swiping: This action has been removed since the introduction of the status update. Now, users can use Tab Swiping, eliminating the friction of using the WhatsApp Tab Swiping instead of the bottom navigation bar.
- New Icon and Interface: For the iOS counterpart, WhatsApp has introduced new colours, buttons, and the ability to filter chats to make it more modern. This makes it easier for users to find options and better manage their WhatsApp and group chats.
- Improving Calls: You can now have up to 15 participants in a call and a group calling feature for WhatsApp groups with up to 31 people. Calling is also faster than before, connecting with large groups of participants in just a few taps.
- WhatsApp Beta for iOS: For years, WhatsApp has been incompatible with the iPad, but now there is a new upgraded app compatible with the iPad, offering all significant features, including companion mode.
There is a redesign of WhatsApp that brings several changes to chats.
- Multi-account Support: The company has finally added multi-account support, allowing users to use multiple WhatsApp accounts simultaneously. This eliminates the need to install parallel or clone apps for another WhatsApp account.
- Third-party Chat Support: The company has been working on addressing the Digital Markets Act (DMA), where companies have to offer users the ability to communicate with each other using different apps. The company has six months to align the app with the new European Regulation to provide interoperability services in the European Union. However, it needs to be clarified and have a timeline or what the company is looking forward to.
- Passkeys: Major companies like Apple, Google, and Microsoft have been working on integrating Passkey into their products and services. Meta is also looking to introduce PassKeys, which makes the platform more secure.
- Email Verification: The company is also working on a new security feature to protect users’ accounts using an email address by verifying their accounts.
- Automatic Security Code Verification: To further improve security, the company is adding a new way to improve account protection, device verification, and automatic security codes for end-to-end encryption.
- Protect IP Address in Call: This new privacy feature silences unknown callers and protects the IP address during calls, offering a better privacy and security experience.
- Original Quality: WhatsApp has recently added the option to send images in HD. Now, the company is sending documents with higher quality and HEIC metadata, which is already possible for photos and videos as documents to preserve quality.
- Who Can Add Me? You may remember that once WhatsApp introduced the option “No one can add me to the WhatsApp group.” Now, a new feature adds the ability to choose a privacy option so that users can choose who can add members to community group chats, giving them more control over their community management.
- Reply Bar: It is a new reply bar feature to quickly reply when you open media in your chat, such as images, videos, and GIFs. However, if it does not appear, you can tap on the screen once. This will improve functionality and speed.
- Group Chat Notifications: A new user experience (UX) for group chats helps users quickly open the privacy settings, contact list, and profile.
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