WhatsApp is launching a new feature to its messaging platform – the ability to create groups without having to give them a name yourself.
It’s a very simple addition, but a helpful one at that. According to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg, who revealed the update on his Facebook page, WhatsApp will instead dynamically use the names of all the participants in a group if you can’t think of one on the spot. For example, a chat room could be called “John & Jane & Brian & Suzy” because those four are in the group. This naming convention can also help differentiate chats if some you’re a participant in share a similar topic or have a few of the same people.
Zuckerberg’s announcement doesn’t go into any further details; not even a quick mention. But a recent report from TechCrunch does reveal some of the tool’s limitations.
A company representative told the publication unnamed groups are limited to just six people “unlike a typical WhatsApp group” which can hold up to 1,024 participants. It’s important to mention that the dynamic name itself will be different for each person. It depends who you have saved on your contacts. So, if you have someone down as “Brian”, that’s what you’ll see. If you don’t, you’ll see their phone number listed in the header.
Availability and future updates
TheVerge claims the update is currently “rolling out globally” to all WhatsApp users on “iOS, Android, web, and macOS.” And there’s a chance it hasn’t arrived on your device yet since it hadn’t on ours. Be sure to keep an eye out for the patch when it does arrive.
WhatsApp has had a bountiful 2023 as this feature is just the latest in a long line of additions to the messaging platform. Earlier this month, we saw the introduction of a screen-sharing tool allowing users to display “live web pages with friends and family”. Prior to that, there was the launch of Instant Video Message for, what else, sending short personal clips.
We’re not entirely sure what Meta has cooking up in the background for future releases. However, a new beta suggests WhatsApp is currently testing group voice chats.
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Cesar Cadenas has been writing about the tech industry for several years now specializing in consumer electronics, entertainment devices, Windows, and the gaming industry. But he’s also passionate about smartphones, GPUs, and cybersecurity.