“Reinvent or die” is a saying, and WhatsApp seems to be taking it very seriously as it tries to become again the favorite instant messaging service for people all over the world.
Now, the Meta app has a new feature called WhatsApp Channels, which makes it easy, safe, and private to get important news from people and organizations straight on WhatsApp.
The channels that are made will be in a new tab called “News”, where users can find the status updates and channels they choose to follow, separate from their chats with family, friends, and groups. And if all of this sounds familiar, it might be because this feature has been around for a long time in other apps like Telegram.
What is WhatsApp Channels Feature?
The messaging service WhatsApp has enormous ambitions. The encrypted messaging service WhatsApp, which is owned by Meta, recently said that a new feature called WhatsApp Channels is coming.
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WhatsApp channels are one-way broadcasting tools that admins can use to send text, photos, videos, stickers, polls, and other material to users who want to see it.
As a “one-way broadcast tool for admins to send text, photos, videos, stickers and polls,” the social media behemoth described Channels. To choose which channels to subscribe to, you can utilize a searchable directory. You can choose to subscribe to channels for your preferred sports teams, hobbies, or local government updates.
How do WhatsApp Channels Work?
To use WhatsApp channels, all you have to do is choose the channels you want to follow. For this, the app has made a directory with a search function where you can find channels about hobbies, sports teams, news from local leaders, and much more. You can also get to a WhatsApp channel through an invite link sent through chat, email, or shared online.
“Our goal is to make a live service that is as private as possible. To do this, the first step is to keep both managers and followers’ personal information safe. As a channel manager, your followers won’t see your phone number or profile picture. When you follow a channel, your phone number won’t be shown to the manager or other people who follow that channel. “You choose who you want to follow, and this is a private choice,” the company said in a statement.
Also, WhatsApp made it clear that news shouldn’t always be available from sources. So, they will only keep channel information on their servers for up to 30 days and add more ways for followers’ devices to get rid of news even faster. Admins will also be able to stop people from taking screenshots and sending material from the channel to other people.
Admins will be able to choose who can join their channel and whether or not they want their channel listed in the directory. Since the point of WhatsApp groups is to reach a large number of people, they will not be encrypted from end to end by default.
Not everyone will agree with the choice, though. The company thinks that this end-to-end encryption option could be useful for non-profits and health organizations, so they will look into it in the future.
When will WhatsApp Channels be Available?
WhatsApp said that some leaders and organizations in Colombia and Singapore will be able to try out the new feature before anyone else to build, learn, and change it.
In the next few months, the WhatsApp Channels will be available in more countries, and anyone will be able to make their own channel. The company focused on helping admins build a business around their channel through its expanded paid services and the ability to push certain channels in the directory to get more people to know about them.
“Of course, people will continue to use WhatsApp mostly to send private messages to their friends, family, and communities. This will always be our top priority.” Users have been asking us for years to take a big step like making channels. We think it’s finally time to add a simple, reliable, and private tool for sending messages, and we hope you’ll enjoy using it in the coming months and years.