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WhatsApp Beta Testing Pinned Messages, Username Picker, and IP Address Protection Features

2 Mins read
  • WhatsApp will soon let users pin messages to the top of group chats
  • These WhatsApp chat messages can be pinned for a day, a week, or a month
  • WhatsApp is also adding support for hiding IP addresses on calls

WhatsApp, the popular messaging app owned by Meta, is rolling out several new features currently in beta testing. These updates include the ability to pin messages in group chats, a username picker, and enhanced IP address protection during calls.

Pinning Messages in Group Chats

Starting with the feature to pin messages, WhatsApp’s beta for Android version 2.23.21.4 now allows users to pin messages to the top of a group chat. This feature is designed to make important messages easily accessible. The feature was spotted by feature tracker WABetaInfo and is currently available to a few testers who have updated to the latest testing version of the app. Users on the beta testing channel can long-press a message and select the “Pin” option, which keeps the message at the top of the chat window. What’s more, users can choose how long the message should be pinned—options include 24 hours, 7 days, or 30 days. At any time, users can unpin the message from the top of the chat list.

Pinned messages in WhatsApp chats and the new share sheet

Pinned messages in WhatsApp chats and the new share sheet

Redesigned Share Sheet

Additionally, this beta update introduces a redesigned share sheet with modern design elements.

Enhanced IP Address Protection

In terms of privacy and call protection, WhatsApp is working on an “IP address protection” feature for voice calls. This feature is currently being tested on WhatsApp beta for iOS 2.23.20.73. When enabled, the feature will route calls through WhatsApp’s servers, thereby concealing the user’s IP address. However, it’s important to note that enabling this feature may slightly affect the quality of voice calls. Other private messaging apps like Signal have offered similar functionality for some time.

Username Picker for Enhanced Privacy

WhatsApp is also exploring a new username picker feature, observed in WhatsApp beta for iOS 2.23.20.71. With this feature, users can select a username that can be shared with other WhatsApp users. This has the potential to facilitate communication with strangers without the need to share phone numbers. The usernames will be customizable, allowing for alphabets, numbers, and certain special characters. It seems that WhatsApp will permit users to change their usernames after selection. However, there’s no official word from WhatsApp on when these features will be available in the stable version of the app.

The upcoming username selection option on WhatsApp

The upcoming username selection option on WhatsApp

Conclusion

As these features are currently in beta testing, they are not yet available to all WhatsApp users. Meta-owned WhatsApp continues to explore enhancements that aim to improve user experience, privacy, and communication on its platform.

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