WhatsApp profile photo download option removed, more changes coming: How your chat experience will change

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New Delhi | Published: May 31, 2019 6:20:26 PM

WhatsApp is making a number of changes to its app that will ultimately affect the chat experience

WhatsApp is making changes to the chat experience on iOS. According to some screenshots obtained by the watchdog WABetaInfo, the iOS beta version adds a minor yet oddly interesting feature that now tells the number of photos or videos sent in bulk on the album thumbnail. It is also removing the saving functionality for profile pictures in its effort to tighten user privacy on the platform.

First up is the change coming to how media is exchanged on the chat app. When a user sends more than four photos and videos, WhatsApp groups them into one blob that seems like an album. The album shows a watermarked information on the album’s size. With the update, the number of contents in the album will begin appearing just below the size. Both the details will be available only if the album is yet to download.

Next is the removal of the download or save feature that lets users keep a contact’s profile photo on their phone. It has already been stripped on the recent beta versions for Android. The regular WhatsApp users on iOS will still see the feature as it is a part of the TestFlight channel, which is an iOS equivalent of beta testing on Android.

There are a couple of under the hood improvements that have been released to the beta version on iOS. WhatsApp now converts audio messages to .m4a format as the OPUS files are not universally supported. OPUS files also degrades the audio quality to make audio notes easily transferable on low-penetration data connections. Another one is a little change to the text that shows up when an audio is being recorded. Instead of ‘<contact’s name> is recording…’, WhatsApp on iOS beta now shows ‘<contact’s name> is recording audio…’

There are some improvements being made to the video streaming functionality. The message notifications have also been improved in the update, as per the notes mentioned in WABetaInfo report. VoIP calls have also been enhanced on WhatsApp.

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