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WhatsApp Beta for Android Gets 'View Once' Feature for Images and Videos: How it Works

WhatsApp View Once (Image: WABetaInfo)

WhatsApp View Once (Image: WABetaInfo)

The WhatsApp View Once feature appears to be inspired by Snapchat that has been allowing users to send Snaps that can be only viewed once.

WhatsApp had previously announced the development of a ‘View Once’ feature but the exact functioning remained unclear at that time. According to the notable WhatsApp updates tracker, WABetaInfo, the Facebook-owned messaging company is now rolling out the View Once tool on WhatsApp beta for Android version 2.21.14.3. The publication adds that the upgrade lets users send media files that will automatically disappear the moment after the receiver views them. To check the availability, Android testers need to open a chat, add a media file like a video or photo, and look for the circular icon with ‘1’ on the right side of the caption bar. The same method to check availability will likely remain the same on stable channels whenever WhatsApp rolls out the feature.

The WhatsApp View Once feature appears to be inspired by Snapchat that has been allowing users to send Snaps that can be only viewed once. The publication notes that when users send photos and videos using View Once, the sender will be notified once the recipient has opened the file. Notably, the sender can still see the ‘opened’ prompt even if the receiver has disabled read receipts. However, the sender will not get a notification if the receiver takes a screenshot or uses screen recording, unlike Snapchat that notifies users. If users send a photo using view once to people who have disabled the option, the feature would still work, and files can be viewed only once. At the moment, WhatsApp is yet to share the exact timeline for rollout. The same publication recently stated that the much anticipated Multi-Device Support could be limited to only one smartphone. The upgrade will essentially allow WhatsApp users to run the app on the web, tablets, or other devices even when the internet on the main smartphone is not available. The company is also said to be testing a chat migration tool that syncs two devices with the same account, meaning users can access the same chats and media files on two different devices simultaneously.

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first published:June 30, 2021, 15:13 IST