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WhatsApp Begins Testing Chat Lock, Status Sharing to Facebook and Voice Transcription Features

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WhatsApp is reportedly testing three new features for its beta release channel, according to WhatsApp feature tracker WABetaInfo. The first feature enables iOS users to lock specific chats for additional privacy, with authentication using Face ID or Touch ID on older models. When a chat is locked, sender names and message previews are hidden, while images and videos are not automatically saved to the phone’s Photos library.

The second feature being tested is the ability to share WhatsApp Status with Facebook friends directly from WhatsApp for Android. This integration will allow users to opt-in to sharing their Status, and will be disabled by default. Previously, users had to leave the app to share their Status on Facebook.

The third feature is a voice transcription feature, which allows users to read the contents of a voice note without having to connect a pair of earphones or play it over the phone’s speaker. This feature is currently only available on recent beta versions of WhatsApp on iOS and requires iOS 16 to function. The voice transcription feature is done on the device and not on WhatsApp’s servers, ensuring end-to-end encryption like messages and other attachments. Language packs can be downloaded to enable transcription in different languages, and the text from voice note transcriptions can be indexed and searched.

These new features come as WhatsApp continues to evolve and improve its platform. The messaging service is owned by Meta, formerly known as Facebook, and has been a popular choice for users around the world. The beta testing phase is crucial for WhatsApp to gather feedback from its users before rolling out the features globally. It remains to be seen when these new features will be available to all users, but they promise to offer greater convenience, security, and functionality to WhatsApp users.

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