WhatsApp has confirmed that its long-standing multi-device support will enter the public beta in the coming months, allowing users to access their accounts from up to four linked devices. New “show once” and “disappearance mode” features were also officially announced. The news fell in an interview Between WABetaInfo and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and WhatsApp Director Will Cathcart.
Cathcart did not confirm reports that WhatsApp has an iPad app in development, but said support for multiple devices would make WhatsApp on iPad a possibility.
In addition to support for multiple devices, Zuckerberg also confirmed that WhatsApp is adding a new “view once” feature, which will allow users to send content that disappears after being viewed. The service is also expanding its disappearance of messages feature, which currently allows messages to be deleted after a set period of time. In the future, a new “disappearance mode” will allow you to enable disappearance of messages on all threads.
The CEO of Facebook has confirmed that the cross-device functionality will not compromise the end-to-end encryption offered by WhatsApp for messages sent between individuals. “It will always be end-to-end encrypted,” Zuckerberg wrote. “It’s been a big technical challenge to properly sync all your messages and content across all devices, even when your phone’s battery is dead, but we’ve fixed this issue and look forward to releasing it soon! “
WhatsApp has not confirmed when the “show once” and “disappear mode” features are expected to launch, but Cathcart said multi-device support will enter public beta “in a month or two.”
In addition to supporting multiple devices, WABetaInfo also reported that WhatsApp is working on a new password protected encrypted chat backups feature that could finally allow users to transfer their chat histories between iOS and Android devices. WABetaInfo has already discovered numerous features before their official release, including add contacts via QR codes and WhatsApp messages that disappear functionality.