WhatsApp is updating several privacy settings in its app to let you hide your online status as part of its beta testing program.
Over the years, WhatsApp has added a lot of privacy-focused updates and features. From the option to turn off read receipts, or blue ticks, to even the ability to keep your profile image a secret from some or all of your contacts. The ‘Online’ indicator that appears next to your name or phone number on other people’s devices every time you open and use the app is one WhatsApp feature that hasn’t changed in a while.
The ‘Online’ status indication may be completely disabled in the future, allowing you to access the app anytime you want without your friends, family, coworkers, or pretty much anybody else finding out. It now appears that WhatsApp is finally working on this.
According to a recent claim by WABetaInfo, which has an excellent track record of foreseeing WhatsApp’s future features, the platform is developing a feature that would allow users to choose who can view their online status.
WhatsApp will provide you a choice between two settings for your “Online” indicator, as shown in the screenshot shared below. You can either set it to “Everyone” so that anybody can see when you’re online (unless they are blocked), or you can set it to “Same as Last Seen” so that only people who have permission to see your Last Seen indicator can see your “Online” indicator.
The number of persons who can see your “Online” status will also vary depending on how you select your “Last Seen” setting. For instance, no one will be able to view your “Last Seen” or “Online” indicators if you set them to “Nobody” and “Same as Last Seen,” respectively.
In similar news, it has been reported that WhatsApp is revising the time frame for message deletion for all users. The messaging app is reportedly sending out the upgrade with the 188.8.131.52 beta for Android through the Google Play Beta program. According to the source, WhatsApp is raising the time limit for the “Delete for Everyone” feature from the current one hour, eight minutes, and 16 seconds time options to two days and 12 hours. Users could remove messages that were sent in error with the longer time frame.
On Windows beta, WABetaInfo has spotted the release of a revised context menu in addition to the option to hide the online status and time limit extension. Users who have downloaded the most recent version of the WhatsApp beta app for Windows 2.2225.2.70 from the Microsoft Store can utilize this functionality. Users can see the screenshot below of the revised context menu in the report to get an idea of the shortcuts available. There are options to paste, undo, and select all text, as shown in the screenshot. Italic or bold text formatting options are available. Before the final release, the functionality is anticipated to undergo adjustments.