Social messaging app WhatsApp has officially launched WhatsApp communities. The new feature will allow users to merge two to three groups at a given time for announcements. This will provide users with larger audiences and more structured conversations.
WhatsApp first tested the feature earlier this year. The feature will allow schools, organizations, and communities including clubs to allow larger file sharing to even greater audiences.
The messaging app will allow larger groups to reap the benefits of the networks end-to-end encryption.
From admin sharing, emoji reactions and large file sharing of up to 2GB, strangers in different groups will now have access to other groups with common interests.
WhatsApp communities is meant to appeal to users who want to announce that Christmas or other event without having to add new group numbers.
The new feature will cater to people already on the platform, who are familiar with each other, or may have exchanged phone numbers with a group admin.
Group admins will be able to transition their groups to communities, or they can re-create their group as a community from scratch.
Admins will also have the power to send invite links or add members to groups for them to join in the community’s feature.
The feature will allow one main announcement to be made where every user will receive a notification.
Members can only chat in small sub-groups which admins have approved.
Sub-groups like the planning group, or volunteer group, will ensure other users are not bombarded by other messages.
“These kinds of groups typically have a connection where people know one another and are organized around a common place or interest,” WhatsApp said announcing the feature.
“Parents at a school, local clubs, and even small workplaces now rely on WhatsApp as their primary way of keeping people up to date. These groups need private ways of communicating that are distinct from social media but provide more tools to facilitate real-time conversations than e-mail or broadcast only channels.”
“We are building a number of updates to provide private, safe, and secure ways for these groups to communicate on WhatsApp with the following principles as our guide.”
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