New Delhi: Inspired by the stupendous growth of video meeting apps in times of social distancing, WhatsApp is building a new feature that will allow more participants, than the current limit of 4, to join group audio and video calls.
Discovered Thursday by WABetaInfo, a fan website that tracks WhatsApp updates, the latest WhatApp Beta update revealed that the company plans to extend the limit of participants on a group voice or video call.
“WhatsApp, probably due to concerns about COVID-19 and the fact that more users are using group calls, has decided to extend that limit to allow calls with more participants,” the report said.
The company has yet to reveal how many users will finally be able to join the group call when the new calling feature is rolled out globally.
The changes were detected in WhatsApp Messenger beta for iOS 22.214.171.124.
While on a call, WhatsApp displays a new header, reporting that the call is end-to-end encrypted.
“All participants will need to be on the latest version of WhatsApp for iOS and Android in order to participate in a larger group call,” says the report.
At the end of last month, 70 percent more people participated in group video calls using Facebook Messenger week after week, and the amount of time spent on those group video calls has doubled globally.
Similarly, voice and video calls on WhatsApp have more than doubled year after year in the places most affected by the virus.
Apple’s FaceTime video calling tool supports 32 people, while Facebook Messenger can support up to 50 people in one call.