Users will finally have the option to control who exactly has access to their profile photo, last seen, and about information.
Last year, WhatsApp began developing a new privacy setting that would let users keep certain individuals in their contact lists from seeing their profile photos, “last seen,” and “about” information.
Although it was only partially available during the test phase, the company has now said it will be made available to all users globally on iPhone and Android smartphones.
Users’ privacy settings for their profile photo, last seen, and about information previously included only three options: Everyone, My Contacts, and Nobody. According to GSM Arena, these are now joined by a fourth choice named “My contacts except…,” which is also accessible for Status privacy.
With the new feature, users are able to choose who in their contacts list sees their WhatsApp profile photo, last seen, and about information.
Similar to read receipts, if someone doesn’t share their last seen with others, they won’t be able to see others either. For now, the only difference is that read receipts always remain active for group conversations, even if the user has turned them off.
On iPhone and Android devices, users can simply go to the application’s Settings > Account > Privacy menu to test out this new privacy feature.
WhatsApp also unveiled various group calling features, including the ability for users to silence other participants during a call and send messages to particular individuals, all of which came as a part of new privacy controls.
Additionally, when someone joins a group call off-screen, a banner is also shown.
The most recent beta version of WhatsApp also has an admin approval function that, when turned on, enables group admins to accept or reject requests from members wishing to join via hyperlink.
According to Mashable, the information was obtained through WABetaInfo and shows that the function, which is currently only accessible to beta users, will soon be made available for the secure versions of the app on both Android and iOS.
The WhatsApp admin approval feature must be manually enabled for each group that needs it when it becomes available. When the function is turned on or off, a brief notification will be sent to all current group members informing them of the change.
It will be visible in the group settings under the heading “Group Membership Approval.”
Every time someone tries to join the group via a shareable link while the group membership approval feature is enabled, admins will see group membership requests in a separate subsection in the “Group Info” section.
On this screen, administrators can select which users they want to give access to the group.