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WhatsApp on iOS will soon show your contacts if you’ve been online recently

The feature was previously spotted in WhatsApp's Android app.

Published onApril 30, 2024

WhatsApp notifications in settings menu
Hadlee Simons / Android Authority
  • WhatsApp is testing a new feature on iOS that shows which of your contacts have been recently online.
  • Contacts who have disabled their “Last Seen” or online status won’t be visible.
  • The same feature was recently introduced in the Android beta version of WhatsApp.

WhatsApp, one of the most popular chatting apps, recently introduced a “Recently Online” feature in its beta app for Android. Now, evidence discovered by WaBetaInfo within the latest WhatsApp beta for iOS (, available on TestFlight, suggests that iOS users may soon receive the same functionality.

The Recently Online feature is showing up for select beta users and provides a limited view of your contacts’ recent activity on WhatsApp. When you go to start a new chat or initiate a call, you’ll now see which contacts have been active within a recent timeframe.

This doesn’t offer a live feed of everyone currently online, but it does give you a valuable indicator of who might be more likely to respond quickly to your messages or calls.

As of now, it seems that your existing WhatsApp privacy settings will integrate with the Recently Online feature. Therefore, contacts who have disabled their “Last Seen” or online status visibility will not be included in the Recently Online list.

This feature could increase engagement with the app, as users may be more likely to reach out when they see a contact has been recently active. Such strategies to increase a user’s time spent within the app aren’t uncommon among social media platforms.

The feature is currently available only to select iOS beta testers. A wider rollout for iOS users is likely in the near future.

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