WhatsApp has added many new features in the last few weeks. After announcing the option to share your phone’s screen with other users, a message editing feature, or even easy data transfer between Android and iOS, the app unveiled a new feature similar to Telegram’s groups. does…
His name ? whatsapp channel
Last week, Meta announced the Channels feature on its WhatsApp instant messaging platform. This new broadcast-based messaging tool provides an easy and private way to receive important updates from individuals and organizations directly within the app. Users can thus choose to receive important updates from selected sources.
But the concept is not new!
Channels is more or less a copycat of a similar feature on rival chat app Telegram of the same name. Additionally, earlier this year, Meta launched broadcast channels on Instagram so creators can push updates to their followers’ inboxes.
As of now, this feature is currently available in only two countries. Mark Zuckerberg said in a statement:
“Today we’re announcing WhatsApp Channels – a personal way to follow the people and organizations you care about right inside WhatsApp. We’re starting in Singapore and Colombia, but we’re looking to roll it out later this year.” will start for everyone. We build channels to be the most private way to communicate. As a channel admin, your phone number will not be shown to subscribers, and following a channel will allow that admin or channel follower to Others who do will also not be shown”,
Notably, the functionality may be assimilated into a newsletter, and is also referred to as a “newsletter”, while it is still under development. Thus the tool broadcasts messages, including text, photos, videos, stickers and polls, to people and organizations and to a WhatsApp group where all customers are members.
These posts will be displayed in a new tab called Updates alongside the existing Status section, unlike Instagram’s meta approach where channel announcements are communicated through direct messages. Users can access channels through chat, email, or through invite links posted online.
This time around, Meta focuses on organizations such as non-governmental organizations, medical research institutions, and fact-checking organizations, as opposed to individual creators.
WhatsApp has in fact said that it is working with various groups such as the Singapore Heart Foundation and the non-profit Colombia Check as part of plans to launch the channel in Colombia and Singapore before a wider launch in other countries soon. Used to be. Its current launch partners also include the International Rescue Committee and the World Health Organization.
What about privacy?
Channels work differently from groups by offering a one-way communication approach similar to newsletters. In other words, unlike the interactive nature of group conversations, channels provide a one-way flow of information from admins to subscribers, allowing admins to share updates without requiring two-way communication.
In terms of privacy, a channel’s admin information is not shared and only maintains 30 days of history. Administrators can also prevent customers from taking screenshots or forwarding messages.
The channels are not end-to-end encrypted, but WhatsApp said it was exploring the idea for nonprofits, healthcare organizations or other privacy-sensitive organizations.