WhatsApp beta testing new 32-person voice chat feature

New functionality is on the way

WhatsApp is reportedly working on a new 32-person voice chat feature. News of this comes as the latest beta begins rolling out to Android users.

As seen within the beta ‘version’ notes, a feature similar to Slack’s Huddles and Discord chats is now in the works from WhatsApp. Spotted by WABetaInfo, the app will soon enable a group of up to 32 people to join a voice chat and begin talking amongst themselves.

Those that have access to the new voice chat feature will see a waveform icon within group chats. Tapping this immediately launches a voice chat with its own UI.

Rather than ping everyone in the group, the voice chat function is designed to be unobtrusive. This feature won’t initiate a call while ringing the phone of each member. Instead, they’ll receive a silent push notification. Users can jump in and out of a voice chat at their own discretion. If all users end up leaving the voice chat, the call then ends after an hour automatically. However, a new voice chat can start at any time.

As with other WhatsApp chats, this feature offers end-to-end encryption, protecting the voice chats on the platform. Only those participating in a call can listen in.

In order to begin testing out the new feature, the latest WhatsApp beta must be installed from the Google Play Store. The latest update is rolling out to users over the coming days. However, a wider release may be in the works for the near future.

Source: WABetaInfo