Although this isn’t an actual update to the app, WhatsApp is now sporting a nifty new feature that—although small—might make a big difference in how users of the messaging app stay in touch with their friends. The Facebook-owned app, which would previously show double check marks if a sent message had been received, now goes one step further and turns those check marks blue if the message has been read.
As can be found in the app’s newly-updated FAQ, group chat and broadcast messages are also impacted by this change. In that case, the two checkmarks will turn blue after every participant within the group has read the message. As mentioned, this feature isn’t part of an update to the app through the App Store, but rather something that the company has pushed over-the-air to both iOS and Android versions of the app.
This change comes shortly after rumors have reignited that WhatsApp will soon be getting some amount of VOIP (Voice over IP) capability, which would let users make—assumably—free telephone calls via WiFi or cellular. Droidapp.nl has seemingly gotten their hands on some of the icons the app will use for this rumored feature, which look a lot like the Phone.app icon.
In case you can’t speak Dutch, the above icon labels translate to “Missed calls,” “Start call,” “End call,” “Incoming and outgoing calls,” and “New call” in order from top to bottom. Droidapp.nl has also uploaded a sound that they’ve been told is going to be the WhatsApp dial tone. Despite that these are leaks of the Android app, we can assume that a similar feature will come to iOS if it ever does indeed make it to the Android version.
If you’re interested in try out the new read receipts feature or looking forward to a time when VOIP comes to WhatsApp, you can get the app completely free in the App Store.
Thanks Ade for the heads up!