WhatsApp beta for Android 2.20.199.8: what’s new?

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WhatsApp has just submitted a new update through the Google Play Beta Program, bringing the version up to 2.20.199.8.
What’s new in this update? Discover all details below!

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IMPORTANT NOTES
  • The Vacation Mode is back, but under development, so it’s not available yet.
  • WhatsApp is currently working to implement this feature, so it’s under development. It will be available in a future update.
  • Note that also Media Guidelines aren’t available yet for the same reason.
  • If you don’t see the update on the Play Store, please refresh the Google Play Store in the next hours.
VACATION MODE

More than 1 year ago, I’ve announced the Vacation Mode to come on WhatsApp for Android, under development:

This feature allowed to keep in the archive your chats, when new message arrived. Unfortunately, for unknown reasons, WhatsApp decided to stop the development of the feature.

BUT… here we go again! WhatsApp has decided to implement the Vacation Mode again, under a new form!
There will be a new dedicated section for the Vacation Mode, that allows to choose different parameters.
When the new feature will be enabled, Archived chats will be moved to the top of your chats list:

If you tap this new cell, the Archived Chats section will be presented, and it has a new button called Notifications:

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When the user navigates into Notifications, he can choose the behaviour of Archived Chats, when new messages arrive:

Here we can see two different options:

  • Notify new messages: it’s the current behaviour. If you decide to disable it (when the feature will be available for everyone), you will have the vacation mode, so archived chats continue to stay in the archive when new messages arrive.
  • Auto hide inactive chats: this is an extension of the vacation mode. If enabled, if a chat is older than 6 months, it will be automatically archived. Probably WhatsApp needs to change the description of this option because it’s not perfectly clear now.

It’s possible that WhatsApp will add more options to manage your archived chats. Personally I hope they will allow to edit that “6 months” thing you can read in the screenshot, so the user can choose the perfect time for him.

This is a very good news. I’ve personally tweeted a lot about the Vacation Mode, hoping to see it back under development in WhatsApp builds. Here some examples:

When there will be new details, I’m going to post an announcement! Stay tuned here!

MEDIA GUIDELINES

WhatsApp is implementing guidelines when you add interactive annotations on images, videos and GIFs, so you can perfectly align text, emojis and stickers.
This happens when sending an image in a chat, group or status update:

Note that guidelines aren’t available yet because this feature is under development. A future build will allow to use them for beta testers officially.

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