Monday, May 20, 2024

What are WhatsApp voice chats and how will they work?

Key Takeaways

  • WhatsApp is introducing a new voice chat system that will work like group chats on Discord, allowing users to join the conversation at any time.
  • The new feature will be open to up to 32 speakers at a time and will be flexible for larger groups. It will also provide notifications when someone starts a chat, making it less disruptive than traditional calls.
  • WhatsApp’s new voice chat system is currently in testing, and while there is no set time for its release, there is hope that it will launch sometime this year. Stay tuned for official updates from WhatsApp.

WhatsApp is a brilliant way to stay in touch with people, between group chats and individual message threads, but in recent years it’s also started to become better and better for group calls.

We’ve been able to call friends and groups on WhatsApp with video or audio for a while, but a new system might be arriving soon, allowing a group voice chat to work a little differently. Here are all the details.

What are WhatsApp voice chats?

Before we explain voice chats, it’s worth clarifying how voice calls work on WhatsApp right now – they’re closed-off systems. That means you can start a voice call and people can join, but if everyone leaves the call, it ends.

That’s not how the new voice chat system will seemingly work for larger WhatsApp communities. Instead, it’ll be more like something on Discord, where there’s a server you can join to be in the group chat at any point.

The feature will apparently be open to up to 32 speakers at a time, but will be available to groups bigger than that limit despite this, so it should be fairly flexible.

This basically means that when you open the chat in question in WhatsApp, you’ll see a banner to let you know that there are people in the voice server talking, and giving you the option to join if it isn’t full, rather than having to schedule a call and have them answer it.

You’ll also be able to set up notifications to let you know when someone starts a chat – again, that’s way less disruptive than getting a full-on call that you have to accept or reject.

This system could be a dream for bigger communities and groups that want to stay in touch but don’t have the ability to hold regular all-hands calls, whether it’s to organise something or just chat.

When do WhatsApp voice chats go live?

The new voice chat system is seemingly already in testing in one of WhatsApp’s many beta branches, so there are some users who might already have access if they’re WhatsApp beta testers.

That said, there’s no real rule to follow about how long it’ll take for this feature to actually roll out to normal users on various platforms – it’s taken different times for different things to arrive historically.

Still, we’re hopeful that voice chats on WhatsApp could launch sometime this year, so we’ll be keeping an ear to the ground for any official word from WhatsApp itself.

Liked this?

If you’re curious to learn about more WhatsApp features you might not know about, be sure to check out our list of tips and tricks for the app, which will almost certainly teach you something new.


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