WhatsApp has introduced a new voice chat feature, offering a seamless experience for large group conversations that target larger groups seeking to interact through audio.
Unlike the voice calls and voice notes, the new feature does not ring each group member individually when a voice chat is started. Instead, users will receive a silent notification and can choose to join the voice chat at any time
The feature allows multitasking and will be available for groups with 33 to 128 participants on iOS and Android devices soon as Meta aims to help members hold audio chats seamlessly. The first contact listed will be the participant who added you to the voice call. In case you do not want to join, tap ‘ignore’, and the pop-up will disappear.
According to Meta, group members who are not in the voice chat are also able to see the profiles of those in the voice chat from the chat header and the Calls tab. The feature also allows one to instantly talk live with members of a group chat while still being able to share text messages in the group. Both can now be done simultaneously.
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The new feature is less disruptive for people who are busy or don’t want to be disturbed. Additionally, the new voice chat feature also makes it easier for people to drop in and out of conversations as needed.
To start a voice chat, Open the group chat you want to start a voice chat with, then tap in the top right corner of the screen and then tap the ‘start Voice Chat’ icon. To leave the chat, just click the X symbol.
Once you start the voice chat, group members will receive a push notification to join instead of a call. As one of the members in the group chat, you will be able to see who has joined the voice chat in a banner at the bottom of the screen.
If a user needs to step away momentarily from a meeting or any other commitment, they can simply tap the chat bubble to exit the voice chat. When ready to rejoin, tapping the chat bubble again facilitates a seamless return, resembling the functionality seen in Discord’s voice chat.
Voice chats will end automatically once everyone has left the chat. They’ll also end if no one joins the first or last person in the chat for 60 minutes.