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Articles Tagged:

whatsapp

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WhatsApp's public group links are now live in the latest beta (bonus: quick media forward icon)

WhatsApp's public group links have been rumored for months and we've even been able to join public groups since June, but unless you had modified the app thanks to some root-only shenanigans, you couldn't issue links to any groups just yet.

Now the feature is live in version 2.16.281 of the app, which is still in beta. If you're the admin of a WhatsApp group, when you go to add a new participant to your chat, you will have a new Invite to group via link option at the top of your contacts list. Tapping it opens a new screen with the unique link to your chat, which you can share via WhatsApp (although that does defeat the purpose, nah?), copy, share via any other app, or revoke.

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[Water gun] WhatsApp brings iOS 10's emojis to its latest Android beta

[Not Allo] If you want Allo, this is what you're looking for: one, two, three.

With that out of our system, WhatsApp's latest beta v 2.16.274 has implemented one change we were all probably not looking forward to all that much. Just like the web app a couple of days ago, WhatsApp now uses new emojis throughout its whole interface. They are, predictively, the same ones that Apple has introduced in iOS 10 with their more 3D-looking designs.

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Editorial: Google Allo looks a lot like WhatsApp, not Hangouts, and that's not necessarily a bad thing

... and a lot like Telegram. And Facebook Messenger. And plenty of other messaging apps too. But enumerating those would make for a very long title so I had to restrict it to the most popular messenger out there.

Google Allo, unlike its sister app, Duo, has its work cut out for it. While Duo doesn't have a clear competitor in the simple one-on-one mobile messaging field, especially on Android, Allo faces a roadblock of established opponents that have had years to develop their featureset, userbase, and public image. On the one hand, this gives Allo the opportunity to start fresh without any unnecessary remnants that other apps and services carry because of their older origins and the room to learn from what has and hasn't worked for them, but on the other hand, it also puts Allo at the very bottom of a very steep hill.

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WhatsApp adds user mentions for group conversations

One of the features we've been expecting WhatsApp to add is the support for mentions in group conversations. That way, not only you would be able to quote someone or some specific message, you'd also be able to directly address a contact inside a group to get their attention. This feature is now live in the latest WhatsApp beta v2.16.272.

When you're in a group chat, try typing the symbol @ and you'll get a list of all the participants in that chat. You can tap any of them or just type the first letters of anyone's name and it'll narrow down to them.

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[Update: Video drawing too] WhatsApp Beta adds image drawing and stickers, bigger emojis, front-facing flash, one-finger video zoom

WhatsApp's developers suffer from a bit of a delay when it comes to updating their changelogs on the Play Store. Yesterday, they pushed version 2.16.262 (followed by 2.16.263) to the beta channel on the Play Store, but the changelog mentioned features we've seen in v2.16.230 like forwarding to multiple contacts and frequent chats, but didn't say anything about the new feature that was really newly implemented in 2.16.262: image drawing, nor did it say anything about the big emojis we've been seeing since 2.16.256. But before we get ahead of ourselves, let's start with the official changelog.

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Fornicating Fruit Fibs: "F*#% Apple" message in Whatsapp is a hoax

You've probably heard the advice to not believe everything you read on the Internet. That wisdom applies to many things, but the most recent example is a silly news story circulating about code supposedly discovered in Whatsapp for Android. According to a post on Reddit, the text "FUCK APPLE" is used heavily throughout the compiled code of Whatsapp. Given the comical and slightly scandalous nature of the story, it spread quickly and few people bothered to question its validity. However, it's totally fake.

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[Update: Block has been lifted] WhatsApp Is Blocking Telegram Links In Its Android App

Honest companies are expected to retain their users by offering the best service they can provide and not by actively locking them in and making it hard to switch to a competitor.

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WhatsApp updates Terms of Service and Privacy Policy to add sharing information with Facebook

WhatsApp today has updated its Terms of Service and Privacy Policy for the first time in four years, to reflect changes made in the app since that time. Perhaps the most important changes regard information sharing with Facebook and the 'Facebook family of companies,' and updates concerning WhatsApp Calling, which launched over a year ago now.

The changes regarding Facebook mean that some information on a WhatsApp account can be shared with Facebook to help improve the company's products and services. This should allow for better spam fighting and abuse, as well as seeing "better friend recommendations and more relevant ads on Facebook."

So what information is actually being shared from WhatsApp to Facebook?

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[It's slowly happening!] You can now send videos as GIFs in WhatsApp, no hacks needed

GIF support in WhatsApp is coming soon. I know it, you know it, we all know it's already baked into the Android app (only requiring a small switch from a root-only app to enable it) and there's even a WhatsApp Animated GIFs folder inside the WhatsApp directory on our local phone's storage that's just taunting us hard. But for those of us who don't want to root our devices or install unofficial hacks, there's light on the horizon.

The first GIF support instance has shown up in WhatsApp and I was able to verify it on beta version 2.16.242.

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Google Allo's voice messaging interface looks awesome, with an eery resemblance to WhatsApp's

Google Allo is clearly one of the most audacious apps to be released by the company in recent times. Not only is it a departure from what Google has long been invested in doing with Hangouts, but it's also trying to catch up in one swift release with competing messaging apps that have been around the block for many years and have had time to perfect their approach.

So it seems logical that the Allo team got some "inspiration" from other messaging services. I can think of a couple of reasons why many of the screenshots we've obtained of Allo eerily resemble WhatsApp — and maybe other messaging apps too (I wouldn't know, I only use WhatsApp so it's the only one I can compare these against).

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