Facebook-owned WhatsApp is currently working on a feature called ‘Disappearing Messages’. What kind of feature this will be? Yep, you guessed it. You will be able to send messages that will self-destruct after a certain time limit.
First discovered by WABetaInfo in the code of beta Android app, ‘Disappearing Messages’ is currently going through an Alpha testing phase which means that it won’t be available to the Beta users right now. But, it’s very much likely that you’ll see it in the Beta version and then the main app soon.
Also, the feature currently seems to be just for the group chats. How this will work is that you go into group settings and there will be an option of ‘Disappearing Messages’ that you can toggle on and off. If you tap on the toggle switch, you will be presented with an option of 5 seconds or 1 hour. There is no in-between. You either keep your message there for a very little or relatively very long amount of time.
Image Courtesy: WABetaInfo
WhatsApp currently has an option that lets you delete your messages for everyone in the chat. At first, it allowed only 5 minutes before the message became permanent. But, it gradually increased up to over an hour. But, one thing that deleted message leaves is a notification in its place that tells users that that message was deleted.
With this new, disappearing messages feature, there will be no tracks for people to see if you’ve deleted a message or not. It will be as if your message didn’t exist at all.
This new feature, if it makes it to the main app, will get WhatsApp more in line with other chat services like Gmail, Telegram and Facebook Messenger.
For now, it’s only in the alpha phase. It’s very possible that WhatsApp doesn’t launch this feature or completely changes it from the way it is now. It’s also possible that the feature only being tested for group chats right now may very well be moved to private messages as well.