A slew of new status features have arrived on WhatsApp, after spending quite some time in the Google Play Beta Programme. Plenty of users have already received the update, though it could take a couple of weeks before everyone can access them, according to Meta.
Since the introduction of statuses back in 2017, there hasn’t yet been an update as major as this one. WhatsApp is adding a private audience selector, voice statuses, emoji reactions, status rings, and link previews to all devices in the coming weeks.
The Private Audience Selector
The private audience selector is changing how users select who can see their statuses. Sure, users can change their statuses’ privacy any time they like, though it’s a long and arduous process – especially when you have to change the audience status by status. With the private audience selector addition, WhatsApp will automatically ask users to select their preferred audience before posting any update. If you’re sharing statuses in quick succession, WhatsApp will save your last selection as the default.
If you, like most of the population, find voice notes to be a plague that aren’t welcome in your chats – you won’t like the voice status update. Users can now upload 30-second updates that’ll delete after 24 hours – just like a standard image or text status.
WhatsApp clearly thinks that typing is far too difficult for the majority of its users. That’s why it’s adding emoji status reactions, that’ll let you quickly share your thoughts on your friend’s meme. Just swipe up, and there’ll be a selection of eight emojis to choose from. This won’t affect how you reply with stickers, text, or voice notes.
Rather than a link taking up a status’s entire page – blocking the image behind it – links posted to statuses will now be shunted to the bottom of the screen, where they belong. And, just like links shared in private chats, users will now be able to see a preview of what they’re clicking on before they do. It’ll help users avoid unwanted links filling up their browser history.
The final addition to the update is status rings, a feature that you’ll have already seen on every single other social media platform. These rings will appear over a contact’s profile picture if there’s a status preview you haven’t yet seen. Click it, and you’ll be whisked away to view their oh-so-important status.
There’s no word on when all these updates will finish the rollout entirely. Some features may have already hit your device – like the status rings. If you haven’t noticed any changes yet, just keep your WhatsApp up to date. It’ll come. Eventually.