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WhatsApp is testing profile pictures for group chats


WhatsApp has long been one of our preferred applications for one-on-one communication, but it has made a concerted effort to shift its focus to enable bigger groups and broadcast-style conversations with Telegram-inspired features. The recent emphasis on communities and related features is indicative of these initiatives. Sadly, WhatsApp has disregarded the group conversations’ visual layout in the process. Currently, profile images in group conversations are making a reappearance for beta testers after a brief absence.

We first mentioned WhatsApp’s limited beta test for displaying profile images next to messages from group chat users back in August of last year. But the experimentation was quickly stopped. According to WhatsApp feature tracker WABetaInfo, Meta typically does this to address implementation problems, even if they aren’t immediately obvious.

However, WABetaInfo now reports that group chat profile image testing has resumed, possibly in advance of a more extensive release on the stable channel. At least for a small number of beta testers, testing appears to have started up again with beta version of the app available on the Google Play Store. In the upcoming weeks, a bigger beta rollout is anticipated by WABetaInfo.

If you’ve ever participated in a WhatsApp group conversation, you know that the name or phone number of the contact is highlighted just above the messages that each user sends. Participants are given different colors, which remain constant and make identification simple once you mentally associate the color with the interaction. A superior solution is Meta’s Messenger software, which displays the user’s profile picture next to any messages they send in group conversations. This is a useful feature for situations where group members’ names are similar.

Because users are used to discovering chats by profile picture, WhatsApp is replicating this Messenger behavior, which isn’t totally a terrible thing. Additionally, WhatsApp will match the default placeholder for the profile photo to the color designated for the contact’s name if they have hidden their profile picture or have not yet selected one. Naturally, if you have friends who frequently alter their profile images, it’s not the best way to conduct yourself. Aside from that, WhatsApp should be happy to offer profile images in group chats. We just hope that the feature will soon be available on the stable channel.

Lucia Coleman

I’m a communication enthusiast and junior editor-reporter at Research Snipers, I have completed a degree in Mass Communication but am very enthusiastic about new technology, games, and mobile devices. I have the main interest in Technology and games.

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