WhatsApp is rolling out a new update through the Google Play Beta Program, bringing the version up to 18.104.22.168.
What’s new in this update? We discovered that WhatsApp keeps working on newsletters, which are now called channels, available in a future update of the app!
|Name of the feature?||Channels|
|Availability?||WhatsApp is working on bringing the ability to create channels to a future update.|
|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.|
|How to join the community on WhatsApp?||WABetaInfo Community|
|Previous news?||WhatsApp beta for Android 22.214.171.124: what’s new? WhatsApp is working on an entry point to open and manage locked chats!|
In February, we discovered a new feature under development referred to a private newsletter tool, available in a future update of the app. Newsletters are designed to be a one-to-many tool for broadcasting information, allowing users to easily receive useful updates from other people they want to get updates from. The feature is still in development but, thanks to the latest WhatsApp beta for Android 126.96.36.199 update available on the Play Store, we discovered that this feature has been renamed to “Channels”, as shown in this screenshot:
As announced in the article about the WhatsApp beta for Android 188.8.131.52 update, channels will be available as a separate and optional section within the Status tab, now called “Updates”. The revamped tab will also include a redesigned interface for status updates, that will appear horizontally in the future.
A WhatsApp Channel is marked as a private tool since phone numbers and user information joining a channel are always hidden. However, messages received within a channel won’t be end-to-end encrypted as the concept of one-to-many referred to channels wouldn’t make much sense as a large number of users will be able to subscribe to a channel. It is worth noting that channels will not affect the end-to-end encryption of private messaging as they continue to be end-to-end encrypted. This means no one else, not even WhatsApp, Meta, and a proxy provider, can read your personal messages and listen to your private calls.
Since this is an optional extension of private messaging and it does not pivot to a public social network, people are always in control over which channels they want to subscribe to, and no one else will be able to see whom they follow, regardless of whether they have added them as contacts or not. In addition, there isn’t a way people get auto-subscripted to channels as there are no algorithmic recommendations or social graphs pushing content to users that they didn’t choose to see.
Channels will support handles so users will be able to search for a specific WhatsApp channel by simply entering its username within WhatsApp, eliminating the need to navigate to external websites. This feature is designed to improve the accessibility of channels, making it easier for users to get their preferred updates.
Channels are under development and they will be released in a future update of WhatsApp. As always, we’re going to keep you up to date by posting an additional article on this website in the event we have further details to share with you.
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