Nishtha KanalFeb 25, 2014 09:10:56 IST
WhatsApp seems to have a nice little surprise for its Android users after being acquired by Facebook for a hefty sum of $19 billion. You can now disable your “last seen at” status on Android, just like you could on iOS. The feature is currently only available on the WhatsApp apk that is available on the website.
We were tipped off by Twitter user @NotPriyanka, who discovered that the privacy setting Android users had been waiting for was finally here. Not only can you hide your “last seen at” timestamp from your friends and from strangers, you can also hide your profile picture and status message too.
What’s more interesting is that unlike on iOS, you can switch freely between the visible and invisible status, without having to wait for 24 hours for the changes to reflect. On iOS, if you do wish to switch your timestamp off, you cannot change your mind and toggle for another day, till the changes are in place.
The ability to hide profile pictures and status messages are also a nice touch by WhatsApp. You cannot make these changes to your settings in iOS, but you can do so now on Android. However, if you do wish to hide your picture, status or timestamp, either you need to choose to turn it off for just strangers, or only from your contacts. You cannot choose to hide from only a handful of your contacts.
Mind you, this privacy feature is not available on the Play Store version of WhatsApp yet, but you will need to download and install the app all over again from the website using an apk file. This also shows that the feature is not available to everyone right now and WhatsApp could just well change its mind and withdraw it at any time. Before you hastily uninstall the version on your phone and install the one from the apk, be warned that you should always back your chats up.
Once you have installed the new version of WhatsApp, you can find the new privacy tab in Settings and then Account Settings.
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