WhatsApp is now in the process of rolling out some new features to the Android app with its groups chat in mind. These new features are not especially designed to add anything new to group chats, but more so to enrich the experience already on offer. According to the brief blog announcement, the features are going live in the Android app starting today.
Most of the new features will be of benefit to those in control of a group chat. For example, the update brings with it new “admin controls” which let those in control determine who has the ability to adjust the group chat's icon, subject, or description. In terms of the latter of these, descriptions are also new with those permitted to post a description now able to add “a short blurb” to a group (shown above). This will then be visible in the group chat settings as well in-view when a new member first joins the group. In addition, those with an admin status now have the ability to remove permissions of other group members including those with an admin status. Though, the new update will also look to ensure individuals who created a group in the first place can’t be removed from the group by anyone else.
It is worth noting that not all of the new features are aimed solely at those in charge of groups as the update also brings with it a “participant search” feature which as the name suggests lets group members more easily search for and find other groups members. In addition, the update will also now add a “group catch up” which essentially acts as a ‘while you were away’ feature letting users see messages and comments that are likely to be more relevant to them, as well as those that are specially aimed at the user. To access this feature, group chat members just have to click on the new “@” icon that should be present in the bottom right corner. As for those who do wish to leave a group permanently, the new update also includes a safeguard to avoid those users being re-added to a group once again.