WhatsApp on Thursday launched its new ‘Communities’ feature, along with polls, much bigger video calls and huge chats.
The Communities tool is said to be intended to organise multiple group chats into one place: so that a school, neighbourhood or office could be joined together with a number of different chats. Administrators can then send messages to everyone in that community.
Earlier this year, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced that WhatsApp is working on a new feature called Communities, which will help people in connecting to groups that matter to them on WhatsApp.
According to Gadgets 360, the feature is aimed at bringing people with the same interests under one umbrella.
WhatsApp is rolling out the ability to create in-chat polls, 32-person video calling, and groups with up to 1024 users.
“Today we are excited to share our vision for a new feature we are adding to WhatsApp called Communities. Since WhatsApp launched in 2009, we’ve been focused on how we can help people have the next best thing to an in-person conversation when they want to talk to an individual or a group of friends or family.
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“We also frequently hear from people who are using WhatsApp to communicate and coordinate within a community,” Mark Zuckerberg said, announcing the feature.
WhatsApp said it focused on “privacy and security” with the new feature. It also noted that it offers safety that is not “not found anywhere else”.
“The alternatives available today require trusting apps or software companies with a copy of their messages – and we think they deserve the higher level of security provided by end-to-end encryption,” it said, seemingly referring to alternatives such as Discord and Slack.
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Communities on WhatsApp will help people by bringing separate groups under one umbrella with a structure that works for them.
It will also help people in organizing discussion groups on matters important to them. The new feature will come with a set of tools for admins, such as announcement messages that are sent to everyone and control over which groups can be included.
To use the Communities feature, users are required to tap on the new communities tab at the top of their chats on Android and at the bottom on iOS.
Following the steps, users can start a new Community from scratch or add existing groups. Once you have joined a community on WhatsApp, you can easily switch between available groups to get the information you need, admins can send important updates to everyone in the Community. WhatsApp reiterated that the WhatsApp Communities are end-to-end encrypted.