Facebook-owned WhatsApp is the world’s most popular chat platform, boasting two billion users. But although the basics are easy to understand, WhatsApp has a number of handy features you may not be aware of – such as Hidden Mode.
One of WhatsApp’s most useful tricks lets users sneakily tweak their privacy settings.
If a contact is online, they have WhatsApp open in the foreground on their device and are connected to the internet
This results in people’s contacts being unable to see when they were last online.
WhatsApp users are probably au fait with the basics, but there are a number of handy features users might not be aware of.
WhatsApp’s ‘online’ feature is set to default on the chat platform.
This reveals to contacts when users were last online on WhatsApp.
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WhatsApp said in a statement: “If a contact is online, they have WhatsApp open in the foreground on their device and are connected to the internet.
“However, it doesn’t necessarily mean the contact has read your message.”
Meanwhile, the ‘last seen’ refers to the last time you used WhatsApp.
By default, WhatsApp sets privacy settings to allow any contact to see read receipts, last seen, about and profile photo.
However, these settings can be tweaked, meaning friends will no longer be able to see when users were last online.
How to activate WhatsApp Hidden Mode:
Begin by opening WhatsApp on your smartphone, then tap the Settings icon in the bottom right of the screen.
Next tap Account, then Privacy, Last Seen, then Nobody.
WhatsApp users can also toggle off Read Receipts at the bottom of the screen.
There are a few important caveats to bear in mind when using the useful WhatsApp feature.
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If users do not share your last seen, they will not be able to view others’ last seen.
If users deactivate read receipts, they will also be unable to see read receipts from other people.
Read receipts are always sent for group chats.
And should a contact have disabled read receipts, users will not be able to see they have viewed a status update.
Although there is no official way to hide when you are online, a clever workaround is available for Apple iPhone users on iOS 13.
First, wait for a message to arrive on an iPhone, where a notification appears on the lock screen.
Next press down on the notification, and the full text will appear.
Users can scroll down to see the message in full.
Best of all, once the message has been read, it will not trigger the blue ticks, or show that you were online.
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