WhatsApp Status, the feature introduced in 2017 as the company’s take on Snapchat Stories, has received a number of updates to make it more engaging and appealing to users. One of the latest additions is the ability to set voice notes as status updates.
On Tuesday WhatsApp announced voice status, which allows users to record and share voice messages of up to 30 seconds as status updates. Users are given the option to record voice notes by tapping the microphone icon on the status screen. It gives a more personal touch to status updates and works as a handy option for those who prefer not to type or use images. WhatsApp last month tested its voice status feature with its Android and iOS beta testers.
The voice status comes months after WhatsApp saw a significant increase in voice messages on its platform. Meta’s messaging app said in March that its users sent an average of 7 billion voice messages every day.
The advent of voice notes on WhatsApp status updates reminds us of the Cappuccino app, which allows users to share short, intimate audio stories with friends.
In addition to voice status, the latest WhatsApp status updates include a ‘private audience selector’ that allows users to easily choose a privacy option per status to choose who can view their status updates. A new audience selection button appears on the status screen. A menu appears that allows users to control the visibility of their status updates. The most recent audience selection will be saved and used as the default for the next status update, the messaging app said in a blog post.
Before the option to select audiences, users had to go to the privacy settings manually on WhatsApp to choose who can view their status.
WhatsApp has also broadened the availability of status responses available to some users a few months back. Users can quickly respond to status updates by swiping up and tapping one of eight emojis.
Similar to Status Responses, WhatsApp has expanded the availability of Status Profile Rings to all users, after making them available to some users in the recent past. These rings appear around your contact’s profile picture when they share a status update – it works a bit like Instagram. Status profile rings are visible in the chat lists, group member lists, and contact information.
Users also get link previews on their WhatsApp status updates. This allows them to show a visual preview of their links to Instagram posts or YouTube videos they post on their status.
The updates have been rolled out to users worldwide and will be available to everyone in the coming weeks, the messaging app said.
Last month, WhatsApp released its native macOS client in a public beta. The app also launched its official proxy support for global users a few weeks ago to help people communicate if their internet connection is limiting connectivity to WhatsApp.