WhatsApp May Prolongate “Delete for Everyone” and Add More Granular Privacy

Those who started using online messengers in the 1990s may remember the “invisibility” feature. No one could see them currently online except for whitelisted users. It seems that Meta will bring the same feature to WhatsApp soon. It’s not the only new addition: soon, users will be able to delete their messages longer after they were sent.

The ability to hide your online status from certain contacts will be available soon, though no dates have been announced yet. With this feature active, you will be able to choose who can see you online at the moment and who can’t. To choose the contacts to see you, you will need to enter WhatsApp Privacy Settings. It’s a long-awaited addition to what’s called Granular Privacy Controls, the feature that currently lets users choose who can see their statuses, user pictures, and “Last Seen”.

Another feature that’s currently in development is enabling users to delete their messages for everyone longer after they have been sent. Currently, the period is 68 minutes and 16 seconds. This ability is also quite useful, though it still cannot grant full deletion. Anyway, the recipient can screenshot the message or save the media to their photo gallery, so it won’t be affected by the deletion. This is to avoid the misconception that the ability to delete messages for everyone indeed grants absolute privacy; the only thing that does is thinking before sending.

The rumours about this feature have been circulating since February, and now they are confirmed. Yet it’s still unknown when a longer “Delete for Everyone” time window will be introduced. Neither is it confirmed for the ability to hide your online status.

Which of these features is more useful for you? Do you think there will be any workarounds allowing you to see users even when they hide their online presence from you? If you have something to say about it, welcome to the comments!