WhatsApp Announces One-Way Broadcast 'Channels' for Following People and Organizations

WhatsApp today introduced Channels, a feed-style one-way broadcast service coming to the popular chat platform where admins can send text, photos, videos, stickers, and polls to followers.

WA Channels
WhatsApp calls Channels "a simple, reliable, and private way to receive important updates from people and organizations," and cites hobbies, sports teams, and updates from local authorities as examples.

The personal information of admins is kept hidden from followers, so things like phone number and photo profile aren't shown. Likewise, following a channel won't reveal your phone number to the admin or other followers. Admins will also have the option to block screenshots and forwards from their channel.

WhatsApp says it is building a directory where channels can be discovered, and you can also get to a channel from an invite link. Admins can decide who can follow their channel and whether they want it to be listed in the directory or not.

Channels can be found in a new tab called Updates, where your Status and any channels you follow will live, separate from your chats inbox.

Notably, channels aren't end-to-end encrypted by default, but WhatsApp is exploring it as a future option. Channel history stays on WhatsApp's servers for up to 30 days, and the Meta-owned company says it will add ways to make updates disappear even faster from followers' devices.

To begin with, WhatsApp is bringing Channels to Colombia and Singapore in association with "leading global organizations and select organizations," with more countries to gain channel creation "in the coming months."

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Top Rated Comments

Kylo83 Avatar
15 months ago
Just leave WhatsApp for what it does best, we don’t need bloatware also the macOS Apple silicon has been in beta for over a year just release it
Score: 10 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Reason077 Avatar
15 months ago
WhatsApp is great. But I'm starting to worry about what Meta might be planning for its future as they seem to be gradually pointing it in the direction of becoming another Twitter/Facebook-style social network. I just hope that Apple and Google can come together on iMessage interoperability and give WhatsApp some serious competition before Zuck gets too carried away...
Score: 9 Votes (Like | Disagree)
fanboy-ish Avatar
15 months ago
I want that feature Apple announced in Messages, the one that lets you transcribe voice notes without listening to them... or just blocking voice notes altogether.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
BanjoDudeAhoy Avatar
15 months ago

I moved to telegram and I am satisfied. imessage and telegram do the work!!
I agree - but try to tell (older) family members that are firmly in camp Android and WhatsApp that.
Can't really cut them off because they won't switch to iPhone or use telegram.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
krspkbl Avatar
15 months ago
People need to stop using WhatsApp.

Every time I see Facebook say they care about Privacy I have a little chuckle. How cute of them! Do they think we're stupid? Facebook and Privacy do NOT go together.

With the other news coming out today about Instagram.... maybe it's time people ditch any Facebook products. Disgusting company that needs to disappear for good.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
TheYayAreaLiving ?️ Avatar
15 months ago
We need WhatdApp for the iPad and Apple Watch. Where is it?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)