WhatsApp Introduces New Voice Chat Feature for Large Groups, Taking Cues from Discord

WhatsApp, owned by Meta, has announced the launch of a new feature for voice chats in large groups, resembling features found on Discord.

While WhatsApp has long allowed voice calls with up to 32 participants, the new voice chat feature operates slightly differently, this feature is designed to reduce distraction and noise in large group voice calls, connecting with each group member silently through an in-chat bubble that users can click to join.

This new feature enables users to discuss matters with those who can join, allowing users to continue messaging those unable to join, users can quickly unmute, pause the call, or message the group without leaving the voice chat by clicking on the call control elements at the top of the chat.

The company plans to roll out the voice chats globally for large groups in the coming weeks, starting with those comprising 33 participants or more, WhatsApp emphasizes that voice chats are end-to-end encrypted by default.

WhatsApp’s voice chats include similar features found in Discord, Telegram, and Slack, allowing large groups to connect through spoken communication.

The introduction of this new feature wasn’t unexpected, as WABetaInfo reported in August that WhatsApp was testing voice chats in the beta phase.

This announcement comes as the messaging platform, owned by Meta, has added numerous features in recent months.

Previously, the platform introduced the ability for users to use two accounts simultaneously, password support for Android, and the new Flows feature to enhance the shopping experience, allowing users to perform actions like selecting a flight seat or booking an appointment without leaving the app.

The launch also follows a few weeks after Mark Zuckerberg, CEO of Meta, discussed the interaction of users and businesses on its platforms, surpassing 600 million times daily.

Zuckerberg noted that the group of apps and other revenues reached $293 million in the third quarter, a 53% YoY increase, largely driven by the WhatsApp Business platform.


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