Eight years ago, in February 2009, WhatsApp was envisioned as a status sharing service. It was only a few months later that it evolved into the messaging service that we now know it as.
With the new evolved WhatsApp Status feature, the world's biggest instant messaging service is moving ahead from "text-only" statuses to include images and videos. This feature rolls out to all users on February 24, coinciding with WhatsApp's 8th birthday.
WhatsApp Status is quite similar to competitor Snapchat's popular Stories feature and the ephemeral Statuses will be visible to contacts for 24 hours to contacts depending on the user's privacy settings.
The new feature lets users share photos, animated GIFs or videos with drawings, images or captions overlaid. According to WhatsApp, the Statuses will be end-to-end encrypted like other communication on the messaging service.
The videos play automatically and you can upload a video with a duration of 45 seconds.
With the help of the view counter, you can see the number of people who have viewed your status. You can swipe up on the screen to view a list of contact names who have viewed your Status.
Just like Snapchat, to view a Status uploaded by your friend, open the Status tab. A list of friends who've shared a Status will fill in.
Status now appears as a new tab on the WhatsApp app between Chats and Calls. It, however, is still not available on WhatsApp Web.
Instagram, which along with WhatsApp, is also owned by Facebook, had rolled out a Snapchat Stories clone last year.
With over a billion users WhatsApp is the most popular messaging app in the world.
WhatsApp has been rolling out updates and features to make the app more secure for its users. It recently rolled out a two-step verification process for all devices to enhance security.