WhatsApp rolls out new ‘view once’ feature for photos and videos

WhatsApp is testing a new feature that will allow users to send videos or photos that can only be viewed once before disappearing from a chat.

According to WABetaInfo, the Snapchat-like feature is now available for specific users of WhatsApp Beta version for Android.

These users will see a small round icon with a “1” on the right side of the caption area when uploading a video or photo, as shown in the image below.

This can be toggled to enable the “show only once” function.

Switch “show once” in the beta version of WhatsApp for Android, via WABetaInfo

The recipient of the item will receive the alert below that the photo or video is set to be viewed once.

The sender will then be notified when the recipient has opened the media item via a new type of read receipt.

Once the recipient closes the message, the media will be removed from the chat and cannot be viewed.

Below is the new read receipt that the sender of the photo or video will see under the message information.

Single display media receiver notification, via WABetaInfo

WABetaInfo warned that the recipient will always keep a copy of the image or video by taking a screenshot or screen recording.

Since WhatsApp does not have screenshot detection, it will not currently notify you about this.

Additionally, the feature will work for media in groups, and group members will be able to see who opened them in Message Info.

It is important to note that contacts blocked in common groups can also open these photos and videos.

Interestingly, the single view feature will also work on apps for recipients who have not yet enabled the feature, although they may not yet be able to send “view once” items themselves.

Show message information only once in group chat in WhatsApp Android beta, via WABetaInfo

Messages that disappear

This feature “show once” WhatsApp started testing messages that disappear towards the end of 2020.

This feature allowed WhatsApp beta testers to set a certain amount of time after which messages from an individual or group chat disappear.

Messages sent and received after activating the feature can be set to self-destruct after 7 days or 24 hours without opening WhatsApp.

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