WhatsApp becomes smarter, now lets you unsend messages

Men pose with smartphones in front of displayed Whatsapp logo in this illustration September 14, 2017. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic

The new WhatsApp features will be available in phases which means not everyone will receive them at the same time. 

WhatsApp has added a bunch of new features to its iOS and Android apps to keep the 1.3 billion (according to the July 2017 numbers from research firm Statista) strong user base pleased. The features will roll out on users' smartphone through automatic OTA (over the air) updates. These features will be available in phases which means not everyone will receive them at the same time. 

Recalling a message 

WhatsApp will now let users remove messages sent by mistake to another group or person. So if you want to delete a message immediately after sending it, tapping on the delete button will show a new option "delete for everyone". This will remove a message not just from your device but also from the device of the person who has received it. Once the message has been deleted the person who has received will no longer be able to see it, but will see another message saying, "This message has been deleted." The only catch here is that the feature works only for seven minutes after a message is sent. The feature is similar to undo send mail feature in Gmail. 

Location sharing 

Sharing location on WhatsApp has become a lot easier. Now users don't have to manually share their location again and again when they want to provide their location update to friends and family members in real time. The new "share live" location feature will keep on updating a shared location on map in real time, for a fixed duration or until users decide to stop it. To access this feature, open any chat, tap the attach icon > location, and select "share live location". A similar feature is also available in Facebook Messenger app. 

Picture in Picture support 

Another new highlight in WhatsApp is that it can now take advantage of the Picture in Picture feature of Android 8.0 (Oreo). This means users who have updated to the new OS will be able to make WhatsApp chat or video call in a small window, while carrying out some other task on the rest of the screen. Users can also customise the size and drag and drop the picture in picture window anywhere on the screen. 

Add colour filters 

Android users can now apply filters on their photos. While the option to annotate a photo and add text was already available, the new feature provides users the option to jazz up their photos a bit more. To use this feature, open the camera in WhatsApp and take a picture or open a saved image from the camera roll and swipe up from the lower edge of the screen. As of now only five filters – cool, black & white, pop, chrome and film – are available to users. The feature was already available on iOS. — Tribune News Service

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