WhatsApp is rolling out a new update through the Google Play Beta Program, bringing the version up to 126.96.36.199.
What’s new in this update? WhatsApp is working on a broadcast channel conversation and 12 features for channels, available in a future update of the app!
|Name of the feature?||Channels|
|Availability?||WhatsApp is working on bringing channels to a future update of the app.|
|I’ve installed this update but I don’t have this feature. Why?||This feature is under development so it is not ready to be released to beta testers, but you can discover a preview in this article.|
|Previous news?||WhatsApp beta for iOS 188.8.131.52: what’s new? WhatsApp is releasing a feature to mention groups within the community announcement group, a community entry point, the ability to silence unknown callers, and message editing!|
In the article about the WhatsApp beta for Android 184.108.40.206 update, we posted information about the Updates tab and channels. The Updates tab will be the new home for both status updates and channels, where you can stay updated on topics you matter more about. In addition, we discovered that channels provide users with added privacy as phone numbers are never visible to followers and the channel creator. The feature is still in development but, thanks to the latest WhatsApp beta for Android 220.127.116.11 update available on the Google Play Store, we discovered further details regarding channels:
As you can see in this screenshot, there are different features planned to be released along with channels:
- Interface: channels will adopt a full-width messaging interface in the conversation. A similar update is already available for community announcement groups after installing the WhatsApp beta for iOS 18.104.22.168 update from the TestFlight app.
- Verification status: channels can be verified and they are marked with the green checkmark icon. However, the process for requesting verification remains unclear. We will need to await an official WhatsApp FAQ to learn more about the verification process.
- Number of followers: there is an indication of the number of followers right under the channel name. This number may be an approximation, particularly for channels with a significant number of followers.
- Mute notifications button: WhatsApp aims to enhance user control over notifications for messages received from channels. To achieve this, a mute shortcut will be accessible within the channel header.
- Handles: as announced in our initial article about channels (when they were called newsletters), channels support handles, which are displayed in the channel info.
- Real followers count: the accurate number of people following a channel can be found in the channel info screen. This count provides the real representation of the channel’s followers, unlike the approximation mentioned earlier.
- Shortcuts: WhatsApp wants to introduce three new shortcuts to enhance the user experience while exploring the channel info screen. These shortcuts enable easy actions such as unfollowing, forwarding, and sharing a channel with other people.
- Channel description: The channel description will be displayed within the channel info screen and it allows channel creators to provide additional information and context to followers, including the purpose of the channel.
- Mute notifications toggle: an extra toggle is provided to easily mute the channel.
- Visibility status: a channel can be set to public, allowing anyone to discover it and view the shared content.
- Privacy: channels offer a secure and private space where your information is kept private and protected.
- Reporting: if you come across any issues with a channel you follow, you have the option to report the channel to the moderation team. In the event that a channel violates the Terms of Service, it will be suspended, and users will no longer be able to follow it. In addition, any previous messages sent to the channel will be deleted as part of the enforcement measures.
As you can read from this list, WhatsApp is working on implementing a lot of features for channels in order to provide users with the best experience once channels will be released. These features also showcase WhatsApp’s commitment to ensuring that users have a large set of features to explore and use and making it easier for users to understand and manage channels.
The ability to view channels is under development and it will be available to beta testers in a future update of the app. As always, we will post an additional article when we have further details about this feature to share with you.
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