Back in November, we brought you the news that you were finally able to unsend embarrassing emails sent on your smartphone. But while that feature might offer some relief when it comes to salvaging misspelled work missives, the truth is that the majority of us save our most personal – and therefore most potentially embarrassing – messages for WhatsApp.
Whether it’s an instantly-regretted kiss-off to a former flame or a tipsy photo accidentally posted on the family group chat, the ubiquitous instant messaging app provides fertile ground for slipping up.
Thankfully, the company now appears to be testing a feature that would allow users to “revoke” messages – deleting them from a receiver’s phone before they have had the chance to read them.
WhatsApp is developing the function as part of the beta version of its latest update, according to monitors WABetaInfo. The tech monitor posted a screenshot of a test of the new beta version on Twitter, stating that WhatsApp had introduced “many improvements for the revoke feature and you’ll be able to unsend messages sent within five minutes”.
The Telegraph reports that it’s not yet clear whether the feature will be able to ‘take back’ messages that have already been read, or just ones that are yet to be opened or still in the delivery stage.
WhatsApp first announced that they would be developing this feature in January, although it was not clear when testing would actually take place.
Back then, it was reported that the instant messaging company would also be fine-tuning a function that allowed users to edit messages before they were opened.
WhatsApp have not confirmed when the “unsend” feature will appear on WhatsApp – but WABetaInfo estimates that it “should be available very soon”.