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New texting formats added to WhatsApp

New texting formatting will be enjoyed by the more than two billion users of WhatsApp, in over 180 countries, with an ease.

“New text formatting shortcuts have entered the chat,” WhatsApp announced on Wednesday via X.

“Behind every product decision is our desire to let people communicate anywhere in the world without barriers,” the app says on its website.

WhatsApp started as an alternative to SMS in 2009 but the app has grown over the years and now supports sending and receiving text, photos, videos, documents, and location, as well as voice calls.

Among its most recent features include the ability to react to messages with six preset emoji effected in May 2022.

At the same time, the share file limit was increased from 100MB to 2GB, and the default maximum size of group chats was increased from 256 to 512.

In May 2023, the app added the feature for users to edit messages up to 15 minutes after being sent.

It followed it up by unveiling Channels in June 2023. Channels allow one-to-many communication for updates and has no defined limit for the number of followers.

Channels do not, however, provide end-to-end encryption of messages, unlike messages in groups or chats.

In August 2023, WhatsApp relaunched its app for Apple computers and added audio and video group calling.

In September of the same year, WhatsApp added the ability for users to share photos and videos in high-definition.

Among its features that were received with mixed reactions was the Read Receipts, which alerts senders when their messages are read by recipients.

Bust just after a week, WhatsApp introduced an update allowing users to disable this feature so that message recipients do not send acknowledgements.

In January 2015, WhatsApp Web was unveiled enabling clients to use the app on web browsers by syncing with the mobile device’s connection.

In March of the same year, voice calls between two accounts were added followed by video calls between two accounts in November 2016.

Meta (back then still Facebook) acquired WhatsApp in 2014 in a deal worth $21.8 billion (Sh3,182 trillion).

The same year, someone discovered a vulnerability in encryption on the Android application that allowed third-party apps to access and read all of a user’s chat conversations within it.

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