WhatsApp Introduces New Status Feature
WhatsApp is keeping with the trends of Snapchat and Instagram and is introducing a new status feature making use of photos, videos, and GIFs.
Published: Tuesday, February 21st 2017
"Imitation is the most sincere form of flattery", or so the saying goes.
WhatsApp, the Facebook owned messaging app, is following in the footsteps of Instagram and imitating a well-known Snapchat feature.
All New Status Updates
The company is rolling out an update to the status function which lets you share photos, videos, and GIFs with your friends and contacts on WhatsApp. According to the company, your status updates are end-to-end encrypted, the same way that your actual WhatsApp messages are.
These new status updates (which can be overlaid with emojis, drawings, or a caption) will only be visible to your contacts for 24 hours before disappearing. Much like Snapchat's stories or Instagram stories.
Whether or not this will be a good change for WhatsApp remains to be seen. WhatsApp has become known as a utilitarian app with a specific focus. The status update could fundamentally change the focus of the app and make it more playful and media creation centric, than messaging and communication focused.
In 2009, when WhatsApp was first created, it did not even let you send messages and only let you update your status.
"Just like eight years ago when we first started WhatsApp, this new and improved status feature will let you keep your friends who use WhatsApp easily updated in a fun and simple way. From all of us at WhatsApp, we hope you enjoy it!" said Jan Koum, CEO and co-founder of WhatsApp.
WhatsApp currently has 1.2 billion users who will begin to see the update roll out in the next few weeks.