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WhatsApp tipped to get disappearing messages soon: Here's how it works (Updated)

Update: The disappearing messages feature has shown up in the latest WhatsApp beta build.

Published onDecember 26, 2019

whatsapp icon google pixel 4 xl

Update: December 26, 2019 at 2:57 p.m. ET: According to WABetaInfo, the latest WhatsApp beta version 2.19.348 for Android confirms that the popular chat app will indeed get a disappearing messages feature. However, in this new build, the feature has been renamed to “delete messages” and gives the user an option for how long they’d like new messages to last before being deleted. Check out the screenshot below to see what it will look like:

whatsapp disappearing messages android

There’s no word yet as to when the stable version of WhatsApp will get this feature, but we hope it happens soon. We’ll update this article as we learn more.

Original article: October 1, 2019 at 3:17 a.m. ET: WhatsApp has gained quite a few features in 2019, including better Google Assistant support and fingerprint authentication. The Facebook-owned team isn’t stopping there, as it seems like a Snapchat-inspired feature is next in line.

According to prolific tipster WABetaInfo, WhatsApp is now working on disappearing messages. The outlet’s screenshots show that this feature is available for group chats, but it’s likely coming to private chats as well.

The screenshots suggest that WhatsApp’s disappearing messages functionality takes an all-or-nothing approach. That is, either all messages in the chat disappear or none of them. In other words, it doesn’t seem like you can send just one disappearing message to someone.

Best alternative messaging apps to WhatsApp
A WhatsApp app icon closeup on a smartphone.

Users can set the expiration time for these messages, with choices being either five seconds or an hour. More options in between these two times would be welcomed though. Snapchat also alerts users when a recipient has taken a screenshot of a Snap, but we don’t know if the WhatsApp team is working on similar functionality.

There’s no word on when we can expect disappearing messages in WhatApp. For what it’s worth, WABetaInfo has previously covered features that the team still hasn’t implemented yet (such as looping videos). So we might be in for a long wait.

What would you like to see added to WhatsApp? Give us your answers below!

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