WhatsApp groups are perennial problems for many of us. We often get added to inadvertent groups, with once-friends whom we haven’t spoken to in ages, and have nothing in common with. Our instinctive first reaction to these groups is to turn off the notifications or mute them for as long as we can – for one year, as WhatsApp allows. Now, though, most users will be happy to note that WhatsApp is testing a beta feature that may soon allow us to mute these pesky, annoying WhatsApp groups, forever.
WhatsApp for Android recently received a new Mute Always feature on the beta channel, which allows users to mute any chat right from the notifications shade. However, the mute always feature design in a way that it only shows up when you receive at least 51 messages from a single chat. Before receiving the requisite number of messages, the app shows a ‘Mark as Read’ button instead, which you can tap to dismiss the WhatApp notification. While the new ‘Mute’ feature can come in handy when you are trying to ignore messages or notifications temporarily, it isn’t as effective as the upcoming Mute Always feature that is currently in the works.
According to a recent report from WABetaInfo, WhatsApp is working on an upcoming new Mute Always setting for chats that will allow users to mute any chat or group chat permanently. The feature appears within the Mute notifications option within any given chat and replaces the one year option currently available in the settings.
The upcoming feature was spotted in WhatsApp beta for Android version 18.104.22.168 and is currently under development. The feature is expected to make it to the WhatsApp beta channel in a future update.
Along with the Mute Always feature, WABetaInfo has uncovered some more information about the upcoming new features i.e. ‘expiring messages’ and ‘multi-device access’ feature in the latest WhatsApp beta releases. We first learned about these features earlier this year in March, and WhatsApp recently started testing these features in a WhatsApp beta release.
With WhatsApp for Android beta version 22.214.171.124, the messenger has made few improvements to the UI for the expiring messages feature. Instead of giving users the option to choose how long new messages stay in the chat before disappearing, the updated UI reveals that all expiring messages will be automatically removed from a chat after 7 days.
Besides, the multi-device access feature has received a new UI to help users manage all connected devices. The updated UI has been spotted in WhatsApp beta version 126.96.36.199, and it brings a new ‘Linked Devices’ option to the three-dot menu. Tapping on the option opens up a new section on the app which lists down all the linked devices and gives users the option to link a new device or log out of a linked device with a single tap.
WABetaInfo also highlights a few details about the upcoming ‘Advanced Search Mode’ feature, which has also received a few UI improvements. The feature was first spotted earlier this year in April, and it will let users select tags such as Audio, Video, Documents, Links, GIFs, etc. while looking for an item sent or received in a WhatsApp chat.
It is worth noting that all the upcoming features mentioned above are currently under development, and they are not available to end-users in the respective beta releases of the WhatsApp.