WhatsApp Testing Group Chats pinned Messages, Username Picker, IP Address Protection
WhatsApp is currently in the process of testing a range of novel features in its latest beta version. Among these innovations, users can now pin chats to the top of their group conversations for a maximum of 30 days. This testing is taking place on the Meta-owned messaging platform. Furthermore, WhatsApp is actively developing a username selection feature and a call privacy enhancement.
In the latest WhatsApp beta for Android (version 184.108.40.206), participants in the beta testing channel have the ability to pin chats to the top of their group discussions. This function, initially identified by the feature tracker WABetaInfo, is currently accessible to select testers who have upgraded to the latest testing version of the app. Users can achieve this by long-pressing a message, which triggers a new "Pin" option. This action ensures that the message remains at the top of the chat window and remains easily accessible, even amidst the exchange of numerous other messages.
While pinning a message to the top, users can select the duration for which it should remain pinned—options include 24 hours, 7 days, or 30 days. Users can also unpin a message from the top of the chat list at any time following its pinning. Moreover, the same beta update introduces support for a revamped share sheet featuring contemporary design elements that are being integrated into other parts of the chat interface.
To address the issue of revealing one's IP address during voice and video calls, WhatsApp is working on a new feature known as "Protect IP address in calls." This development, as uncovered by WABetaInfo in WhatsApp beta for iOS version 220.127.116.11, reroutes calls through the company's servers when enabled. However, users should be aware that this feature may result in a slight degradation in voice call quality. It's worth noting that Signal, another private messaging app, has offered similar functionality for an extended period.
Furthermore, in WhatsApp beta for iOS version 18.104.22.168, the Meta-owned messaging service is exploring a username selection feature. This innovation will enable users to choose a username that can be shared with other WhatsApp users, facilitating communication without the need to disclose one's phone number. The username selection will be optional and will accept alphanumeric characters and select special characters. These usernames will be unique, and WhatsApp is expected to provide the option to change usernames after they are initially selected. Unfortunately, there is no official release date for these new features in the stable version of the app at this time.