WhatsApp is planning to add video and voice calls to WhatsApp Web, making it a viable alternative to Zoom for your desktop video conferencing needs.
Until now, WhatsApp Web has been a fairly basic tool, only useful for sending and receiving text and images, but its developers have been hard at work, and it will soon be possible to use the online app to make voice and video calls as well.
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As reported by the sleuths at WABetaInfo (opens in new tab), who specialize in discovering upcoming WhatsApp features by digging into the app's source code, buttons for calls will appear at the top right of the web interface. While a call is in progress, a small pop-up window will appear to show you its status (a handy feature that will allow you to browse the web in other browser tabs at the same time).
Although the feature has yet to be launched officially, WABetaInfo suggests it could arrive within a matter of weeks, as it seems to be nearly complete. We'll keep you updated as and when it becomes available.
What's next for WhatsApp
If you only use WhatsApp on your phone, not the web, there are still lots of interesting features in the pipeline, including the ability to send self-destructing photos that aren't stored on the recipient's phone and are removed from the chat once they've been viewed.
If you want to be the first to try the latest features, you'll need to join WhatsApp's beta program. Unfortunately the program for Apple devices is currently full, though it's worth keeping an eye on the Testflight page (opens in new tab) to see if a space opens up.
To join the beta program for Android, visit the WhatsApp Beta page on Google Play and enter your details. If you already have the public version of WhatsApp installed, it will be updated to the beta version automatically within a few hours.