Meta adds several new features to WhatsApp status, which allow you to post disappearing photos and other media. As the features roll out in the coming weeks, you’ll be able to reply to messages from people with an emoji, limit who can see your status, and post voice messages.
According to an announcement post, the status emoji reactions work the same as on Instagram; when you swipe up on the message, you get the option to choose from one of eight emoji. (The options are ?,?,?,?,?,?,?, and ?.)
While a WhatsApp blog post calls emoji reactions the number 1 requested feature after it launched the ability to comment on messages last year, personally I feel the Private Audience Selector is the most useful addition announced today. This feature allows you to change who can see your statuses, with the option to show it to everyone, hide it from certain contacts, or only show it to specific people. According to Meta, the options you choose are the default for the next status you post, but you can change them without changing the visibility of previous statuses.
Other features include small improvements in quality of life. Statuses that contain links will also be more visually appealing – Meta says there are now previews of the site or page the link takes you to. WhatsApp is also trying to make it clearer when people post a status by adding a ring around their profile picture in the chat lists, group members lists and contact information screens.
These all seem like good additions to the status feature, but I wonder how many people will use them. Some of my colleagues who use WhatsApp say they’ve never seen anyone post a status, and I’ve certainly heard more people refer to competing products like Stories on Snapchat or Instagram (although it’s worth noting I live in the US, where WhatsApp not working). don’t have a huge grip). If you’re a WhatsApp user, let us know in the comments if you or your friends are big fans of statuses – or if Tuesday’s announcement might entice you to give them a try.