Washington, USA: Popular messaging application WhatsApp has finally added the disappearing photos and videos feature to the stable version of the app. The feature is called 'View Once' and works similarly to Instagram's expiring media feature.
As per The Verge, the feature is being rolled out today. It will delete photos or videos from users' chats after they have been opened by the recipient. When sending a photo or video, you can make it view once by tapping the "1" button to the left of the send button. After the recipient opens it, it will be deleted. The recipient will be able to see that it is a disappearing photo, so it is still the type of thing you'd only want to use for people you trust to not take a screenshot.
The company has confirmed that any content users send using the new feature will not be saved to the recipient's Photos or Gallery.
The messaging application will not allow users to forward, save, star, or share photos or videos that were sent or received with the 'View Once' feature. Users can only see if a recipient has opened a View Once photo or video if they have read receipts turned on.
The company also stated that if the photo or video sent through the new feature is not opened within 14 days of it being sent, then the media will expire from the chat. However, one can restore the 'View once media' from backup if the message remains unread at the time of backup.
But if the media has already been opened then it will not be included in the backup and can't be restored.
The downside of the feature is that WhatsApp allows users to take a screenshot of the media before it disappears. Additionally, the individual will not get notified if someone takes a screenshot of the photo or video sent.
In June, Mark Zuckerberg confirmed that the feature would be coming, though details about when it would release were scarce. According to WaBetaInfo, the feature has been in beta for about a month.