WhatsApp finally extends the deadline for deleting embarrassing messages

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WhatsApp is about to roll out a feature that will give users a 60-hour window to delete a message they’ve already sent to someone.

This marks a big change for the Meta-owned app, which previously only gave users an hour and 8 minutes to unsend a message – something that was first introduced in 2017.

The tweak comes after Apple announced similar capabilities earlier this year for its own popular instant messaging app – iMessage.

The change will be welcomed by iPhone users, who only have 15 minutes to quickly delete the sent message.

Credit: PA Images / Alamy Stock Photo

More impressively, however, iPhone owners will also have 15 minutes to edit messages if they wish, a feature that remains missing from WhatsApp.

“Rethinking your message? Now you will have just over 2 days to delete your messages from your chats after clicking send”, WhatsApp tweeted tuesday.

The time limit for resuming messages is now two days and 12 hours – or 60 hours to be exact.

The way a message can be deleted remains the same as before.

As before, the person on the other end will receive a “this message has been deleted” notification instead of what was before.

WhatsApp’s new direction follows increased competition in the form of other instant messaging apps such as Telegram.

Credit: mundissima / Alamy Stock Photo
Credit: mundissima / Alamy Stock Photo

Having grown in popularity over the past few years, Telegram places no time limit on deleting a message, a decision that brings its own unique set of problems.

Just like iMessage, editing is also a core feature of the app, which WhatsApp adamantly refuses to incorporate at this point.

Telegram poked fun at its IM rivals in a Tweet earlier this year, pointing out how long the edit button has existed on their app.

Other intriguing changes announced by WhatsApp today include the new ability for users to silently leave groups.

When people leave group chats right now, the entire chat is instantly notified, potentially attracting unwanted attention in the process.

Form here, the company claims that only administrators will receive a notification.

Following this, in his post announcing the new updates, Mark Zuckerberghead of WhatsApp’s parent company Meta also outlined a number of new security features.

“We will continue to create new ways to protect your messages and keep them as private and secure as face-to-face conversations,” he said in Tuesday’s announcement.

One such feature aimed at doing just that is giving users the ability to limit who can see they’re “online” while using the app. Previously, this could not be changed.

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