WhatsApp is introducing a feature that will prevent media from being automatically saved in the gallery or camera roll of a smartphone, while enabling chat messages to disappear. The encrypted messaging service will still allow users to manually save the media sent to the disappearing chat. The company has also been seen working on new image editing tools in the latest beta version of its iOS app – adding two new pencil tools to annotate or markup images before sending them to WhatsApp.
The meta-owned messaging service has been spotted by WhatsApp feature tracker WABetaInfo, changing the way media is stored in disappearing chats. Users of the latest version of WhatsApp for Android and iOS will now see a message explaining that the “Media Visibility” feature has been turned off for chats with the ability to enable disappearing messages. The feature was first seen in development in February.
WhatsApp’s disappearing messages feature is designed to remove messages from both the sender’s and recipient’s smartphones after a certain period of time, and users can choose between three options for chats to disappear – 24 hours, 7 days and 90 days. Messages, photos, videos, GIFs and other attachments sent to disappearing chats are automatically deleted, and the latest update now disables the feature to automatically save all media sent to disappearing chats.
When users tap on the media visibility settings in an invisible chat, WhatsApp now displays a popup notification that notifies users that chat messages have disappeared. “Because of privacy, media is not automatically stored in your phone’s gallery. To protect the media from this chat, turn off disappearing messages, “the statement said. Gadgets 360 has been able to confirm that the feature has been disabled for chats that have been enabled for disappearing messages in the latest versions of WhatsApp for Android and iOS.
Users will still be able to select individual images and save them to their camera roll on iOS, while Android users will also be able to manually save media on some versions of WhatsApp according to Feature Tracker. Gadgets 360 has been able to manually save images from WhatsApp chats and enable disappearing messages on the latest Android and iOS apps.
Meanwhile, the latest WhatsApp for the iOS beta version has begun testing a redesigned media editor for some users – this is also expected to be a future WhatsApp for Android beta build, according to Feature Tracker. The update adds two new pencil drawing tools, located at the bottom of the screen. A blur tool has also been added under the media editor near the new drawing tools. These changes are only visible to some users in the latest beta version of WhatsApp for iOS and may be rolled out to all users at a later date.