Whatsapp is on a do-or-die mission to be the sole leader of modern-day messaging, even if it means blatantly copying dozens of features from other platforms and apps. Akin to Snapchat’s feature of “stories,” Whatsapp has just launched a new tab that allows users to share decorated photos, videos, and GIFs that self-delete after 24 hours.
The feature is called Status, which is a way for WhatsApp to move from a traditional message app towards a social networking feature and builds on its end to end encryption technology. ‘Status’ was first brought to the scene as a beta feature in November, but now has been fully incorporated into the app.
The new feature allows Whatsapp users to scribble on images or add text and emojis – just like they do on Snapchat. The update is rolling out worldwide on iOS, Android, and Windows Phone, as claimed by TechCrunch.
Whatsapp’s onslaught to “borrow” Snapchat’s features is anything but subtle. This rivalry rises from Facebook’s attempt to buy off Snapchat in 2013 for $3 billion, which was turned down as the company believed it was worth $4 billion.
‘Even after we added messaging in the summer of 2009, we kept the basic ‘text only’ status functionality in WhatsApp,’ CEO Jan Koum writes in an announcement.
‘We are excited to announce that, coinciding with WhatsApp’s 8th birthday on February 24, we are reinventing the status feature.’
‘Starting today, we are rolling out an update to status, which allows you to share photos and videos with your friends and contacts on WhatsApp in an easy and secure way. Yes, even your status updates are end-to-end encrypted.’
WhatsApp users will now be able to watch updates from friends and be able to send messages privately while decorating images with drawings, emojis, and captions to be published as “stories.” But WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption means that there is no chance for it to be hacked or the “deleted” photos to be leaked, like what happened with Snapchat a few years back. Add the latest two-step verification to the security, and “Status” is sure to be a big hit!
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