WhatsApp is an instant messaging app that Facebook acquired in 2014. You’d typically use the app to send things like text messages, images, video, audio messages – or even to place a Wi-Fi call to a friend.
It’s recently taken the crown for the world’s most popular messaging app after hitting one billion active users, handling a whopping 42 billion messages a day and 250 million videos.
There’s always a bit of a learning curve when it comes to mastering new apps and WhatsApp is no different. If you have some patience and the willingness to tinker, however, we’re sure that anybody can figure out WhatsApp in no time but we thought we’d make it a little easier.
Whatsapp has swiftly grown from a small startup to one of the most popular messaging apps in the world, with over one billion users.
While you may use it every day, you might be unaware of the cool tricks and secret features hiding in the app.
Use the new typewriter font
The new font looks like a classic typewriter. To change the font of your WhatsApp messages, use the ` symbol three times either side of the word. For example, “`Hello“`. The symbol – not to be mistaken with ‘ – is available on the Android keyboard, but isn’t on the standard iOS one. If you’re using an Apple device for WhatsApp you can copy and paste this “` and use it either side of the word.
Send the same message to multiple people without them knowing
In the top left of the WhatsApp “Chats” screen, there is a little-used feature called “Broadcast Lists”. This lets you send the same message to multiple contacts at once without them knowing, a bit like the “Bcc” button on emails.
Rather than turning to Facebook to invite people to a party event, or asking multiple people if they want to play football without setting up a group chat, you can do it with one message in WhatsApp.
Go to Chats -> Broadcast Lists -> New List -> add contacts and write out your message -> hit send. The message and their reply will appear in your private chat with each person, but with a little megaphone icon next to it. Your contacts won’t have any idea that the message was sent to anyone but them.
Hide timestamps, read receipts, and more
When you look at a chat window or even a contact within WhatsApp, you’ll often see a “Last Seen” time stamp under his or her name. It’s a handy little indicator for when the contact last checked WhatsApp. If you don’t want people to see when exactly you’re using WhatsApp, you can hide your Last Seen timestamp. Just go to Settings, then Account, and Privacy.
Be sure to toggle Last Seen to “Nobody”, but doing so will also prevent you from being able to see everybody’s last seen time. Under this section, you will also see that you can hide your profile photo, status, and read receipts. You can even manage your list of blocked contacts.
Trick of the blue ticks
If you want to keep read receipts on but stop the someone seeing when you have actually read a message, there is a trick for that too. Before you open the specific message, put your smartphone into airplane mode. Open the message when airplane mode is still on and then come out of it and turn it off.
The ticks shouldn’t turn blue so the sender won’t know you’ve read it.
Archive your chats
Archive Chat allows you to hide a conversation from your Chats screen. It does not delete the chat nor does it back up the chat to your SD card. It simply organises your conversations. You can archive groups or individual chats, and they will disappear until you pull down from the top of the Chats display and tap the Archived Chats tab.
Bold, Italics, Strikethrough
You can format the text in WhatsApp messages by adding symbols in front of and afterwords.
For bold add asterisks to either side of a word or sentence, e.g. *bold*
Italicise a message with underscores, e.g. _italics_
To strikethrough text add tildes, e.g. ~strikethrough~
You can also combine the formats by adding multiple symbols before and after a word, such as _*bolditalics*_.
Find out who you talk to the most
To find out who your best friends on WhatsApp are, if you have an iOS device, head to Settings -> Account -> Storage Usage. Here you’ll see a list of the people and groups you message on WhatsApp along with the total number of interactions you’ve had with that person/group.
If you select “Size” at the bottom right of the screen you can see who you have spent the most data WhatsApp-ing.
See how much data WhatsApp uses and reduce it
For a breakdown of the total amount of data you are using on WhatsApp go to Settings -> Data Usage -> Network Usage.
In the Data Usage menu, you can limit the amount of data WhatsApp uses by only allowing the app to auto-download images, audio, video, and documents when your phone is connected to Wi-Fi.
You can also select the Low Data Usage mode to reduce the amount of data that’s used for WhatsApp calls.
Mute overzealous group chats
Get a good night’s sleep for once by muting those annoying group chats Credit: Telegraph
If you have one or two group messages that are constantly abuzz, you can mute the chat for eight hours, a week or a year. Go into the chat, and tap the name of the group -> Mute -> select the amount of time. You can also mute notifications on one-to-one chats.
Control what personal information unknown users can see
If you’ve ever been added to a group chat with people you don’t know, or you’ve moved a Tinder conversation to WhatsApp but aren’t sure it’s going anywhere, you can restrict what information those users know about you.
Go to Settings -> Account -> Privacy and change Last Seen, Profile Photo, and Status to My Contacts. This means only users saved in your phonebook will be able to see your picture and when you were last online.
You can now share documents directly from your Google Drive and iCloud Drive into a WhatsApp chat.
Tap the upwards arrow that is to the left of the text window -> Share Document -> select where to share a document from, including Google Drive and iCloud Drive.
Read messages without blue ticks
If you want to give yourself time to reply to a message on WhatsApp without the other person seeing the dreaded blue ticks, this trick will help. It lets you read a message without giving the game away.
Once you receive the message, don’t open it, and dismiss any notifications on your home screen.
Open up Airplane mode, which blocks Wi-Fi and mobile data, and prevents any new messages from arriving
Open WhatsApp to read the message in full
Fully close the app and then deactivate Airplane mode. Despite having read the message, the blue ticks won’t be displayed.
If read receipts are the bane of your WhatsApp existence, you can turn them off completely by going to Settings -> Account -> Privacy and toggle Read Receipts off.
Stop incoming pictures and videos automatically saving to your phone
If you get fed up of having the pictures friends have sent you to appear in your phone’s Photostream, go to Settings -> Chats -> turn off Save Incoming Media.
Add dates to your calendar
Add events to your diary straight from a WhatsApp conversation Credit: Telegraph
If you state a date or time for an activity in a WhatsApp chat on an iOS device the date will appear blue and underlined. Tap on the hyperlink and it will give you the option to Create Event in your calendar. It only works if you are specific with the dates, for example, Tuesday 17 rather than just Tuesday.
Add a home screen shortcut for individual chats
You can set up a home screen icon that links directly to individual chats by tapping and holding on the chat and selecting Add Conversation Shortcut. An icon of the person’s profile picture will appear on your home screen, but only if you have an Android phone.
Another Android-only shortcut is that you can reply to messages without opening WhatsApp. You can enable the feature by going to Settings -> Notifications -> choose Always show the popup. The notifications that appear when you receive a message will give you the option to reply from the lock screen.
For iOS you can enable a quick reply function by downloading a third party app.
Use WhatsApp on your computer
You can send and receive WhatsApp messages on your computer using the browser version WhatsApp Web, or the desktop app.
To use WhatsApp Web go to web.whatsapp.com on your computer and Settings -> WhatsApp Web on your phone. Scan the QR code displayed on your desktop screen using your phone’s camera until they connect. The two browser version of the app will only work if your phone remains switched on, connected to Wi-Fi, and near the computer.
If you want to keep WhatsApp running on your computer more permanently you can download the desktop app. Like WhatsApp Web, the app connects to your computer through a QR code and only works if your phone is present.
Transfer files between your phone and computer
Transfer files between your phone and computer with WhatsApp Web Credit: Telegraph
With WhatsApp Web and desktop you can transfer files between your phone and computer with relative ease by sending them to yourself in a message.
The easiest way to self-massage is to create a group with one friend and then delete them from it
Connect your phone to your computer using the QR code on WhatsApp Web or desktop
Send a file from your phone and watch it appear on your computer
To save a file to your computer click on it and tap the download icon.
Protect your chats
Stop prying eyes from reading your messages by preventing the first line from appearing on your home screen. Go to Settings -> Notifications -> disable Show Preview.
You can also prevent nosy friends from happening on your chats by adding a password to WhatsApp through a third party app, such as AppLock for Android or iAppLock for iOS.
Send a giant heart
If you send a red heart emoji on its own it will appear as a giant, beating heart.
Send much more than just text
Using this app don’t get limited to just sending text messages, as you also have the advantage of sending various options that this application has such as pictures, videos, sound clips, addresses, and even contacts. To share media
First of all, go to chat window of friend with whom you’re going to share media
After that tap on the icon on the right side of the sender name.
After that pop will open choose the media type, select and hit send
Choose and edit Whatsapp profile pictures
You can also set your Whatsapp profile picture which is your friend is going to see and to set a profile picture, click on the menu button. After that setting, then choose the photo you want to set as a profile picture. Also if you want to change the existing one, delete the previous one and upload a new one using gallery or camera.
Create shortcuts to WhatsApp conversations
If you’re addicted to Whatsapp and use this app at an interval of every 5-10 minutes, then might be you’re fed up of launching this app again and again. But in android version of Whatsapp, you’re able to create a shortcut to conversations that appear on home screen. The advantage is now you don’t have to launch this application, again and again, to pick up on the conversation. To create a shortcut
To set this up, choose ‘More’ in the chat menu
Now tap the ‘Add conversation shortcut’ option.
Make Backup of Whatsapp Conversation
If you feel that some of the conversation which you made on Whatsapp are very valuable and important and you don’t want to lose a single word from those conversations. Then not to worry Whatsapp also have a solution for you i.e. Make “backup of Whatsapp conversation”. To make a backup
Go to the Settings menu, choose ‘Chat preferences’
Then click on the Chat history backup option.
Save Photo’s you’ve received
The images and videos which you share with your friends remain saved on your device. You can find all of them by navigating to the WhatsApp\media\WhatsApp Images folder. Or you can also find all of them in the gallery, the advantage is that you can reshare all those images on Facebook and other media. You can also apply them as a profile picture, contact image and so on. If you are using Whatsapp on your android, then you can check all shared media just by clicking on the media button in the chat menu.
Change the WhatsApp chat wallpaper
While using this amazing app you also have the option to change the background, if you are feeling bored. That means no more staring at those old backgrounds on Whatsapp. You can choose the background to appear in this window by going to wallpaper option in the chat menu. And if you feel that default backgrounds are not your cup of tea, then you also have the option to add an image as a background which is on your Android device.In iOS, choose Conversation setting in setting menu and tap chat wallpaper before choosing the image which you want to apply.
Send WhatsApp conversation history to anyone
If you want to share the conversation history with any of your friend, not a big problem because you can share it via email. To send that what you need to do is
Click on the Menu option in a conversation (it’s on the bottom-right of the screen)
Now go to ‘More‘ and select ‘Email Conversation‘, before entering the address of the recipient.
Now Whatsapp will create an email with the whole text conversation, including any pictures, voice or video clips.
So these are 10 of the best hidden features of Whatsapp for Smartphone which I found to be useful, but if you feel that I forget to add any good one feel free to share with us