Never miss a group call again! WhatsApp launches ‘Joinable Calls’ feature that lets you connect to a call even AFTER it’s started
- Joinable Calls is the perfect feature for WhatsApp users with punctuality issues
- It lets latecomer users enter group voice and video chats after they have started
- Users can also drop out and re-join the call later as long as it is still happening
A new feature on WhatsApp called Joinable Calls lets you connect to group calls after they’ve started.
The feature, which rolls out from today and is available for both voice and video calls, is the perfect fix for users with punctuality issues.
With Joinable Calls, if someone in your group misses a call when the phone rings, they can still join at any point during the chat.
It also lets all any participants in a group call drop out and re-join the call later as long as it’s still happening.
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Joinable Calls from WhatsApp is the perfect feature for users who have issues being on time for calls
HOW DOES IT WORK?
WhatsApp users will be able to see calls in progress under the ‘Calls’ tab.
They’ll be given the option to ‘tap to join’ as long as the call is in progress.
Participants can also drop out of the call and re-join later.
Generally on WhatsApp, chats and calls are either between one other person or several other people (in groups).
Users have to be part of a group to experience Joinable Calls.
WhatsApp has help pages for how to create a group on WhatsApp, as well as how to make a group video call and how to make a group voice call.
WhatsApp said in a blog post that the feature is for friends or family members who realise they’re missing ‘a special moment’ on the platform.
‘Today we’re introducing the ability to join a group call, even after it’s started,’ the Facebook-owned firm says.
‘Joinable Calls reduce the burden of answering a group call as it starts, and brings the spontaneity and ease of in-person conversations to group calling on WhatsApp.
‘At a time when so many of us are apart, there’s nothing better than getting together on a group call with friends and family, and there’s nothing worse than realising that you missed a special moment.’
On WhatsApp, calls are listed under the ‘Calls’ tab on the app’s homepage.
With Joinable Calls, users will know when group voice or video calls are in progress without them by tapping on the Calls tab.
When calls are in progress, they’ll be given the option to ‘tap to join’.
Whether they’re voice or video calls will be denoted by a small telephone or camcorder icon, respectively.
The feature also includes a ‘call info screen’ so users can see who is already on the call, and who has been invited but hasn’t yet joined.
And if you tap ‘ignore’ you can join later from the calls tab in WhatsApp.
Like with any type of text, voice or video-based communications on the platform, Joinable Calls will be end-to-end encrypted.
This means that only the participants of a chat can access the content of the messages, and no one in between – not even staff of the company that owns the service.
Joinable Calls comes just a week after WhatsApp announced it’s letting users send messages from its PC app without needing to have their smartphone connected.
The feature also includes a call info screen so users can see who is already on the call, and who has been invited but hasn’t yet joined (pictured)
WhatsApp is testing the feature with ‘a small group of users’ as part of a beta test before ‘slowly rolling it out more broadly’, the firm said.
Prior to this, users needed their smartphone to be on and connected to the internet for the PC version of WhatsApp to work.
In June, the platform launched Fast Playback, allowing users to increase the playback speed of audio messages to up to double speed.
And in March, WhatsApp rolled out one-to-one voice and video calls for the desktop version of its chat platform on Windows PCs and Apple Macs.
WhatsApp began rolling out voice calls for its mobile app in 2015 and video calls the following year. March’s update brought both of these features to WhatsApp for desktop.
BEST WHATSAPP ALTERNATIVES
If you’re considering deleting WhatsApp, you’ll be happy to hear that there are several alternative apps to choose from:
With more than 400 million users, Telegram is one of the most popular WhatsApp alternatives.
While it looks very similar to WhatsApp, what sets it apart is the fact that it gives the option to set messages to self-destruct after a given period of time, leaving no trace.
Telegram also offers end-to-end encryption.
However, as a WhatsApp spokesperson pointed out, Telegram ‘does not offer end-to-end encryption by default so it’s not necessarily more secure than WhatsApp’.
Signal is one of the most secure messaging apps, thanks to the fact that it is open-source.
This means that the code for the app is publicly available to view, making it near-impossible for the app’s creators to sneak in any backdoors that could allow governments or hackers to spy on your messages.
If you use an iPhone, you may consider simply switching to iMessage, Apple’s own messaging app.
The app has a number of impressive features included no character limits, the ability to send pictures and videos, and of course Apple’s animated emoji feature, Animoji.
Unfortunately, iMessage is only available for iPhone users, so you’ll struggle to interact with anyone using an Android.
4. Google Messages
Google’s answer to iMessage is Google Messages, an Android-only messaging service.
The app replaces your standard SMS app, and integrates with all of Google’s apps and services, making it easy to share images or use Google Assistant.
5. Facebook Messenger
If you were put off using WhatsApp due to its sharing of data with Facebook, Facebook Messenger may not be the best option for you.
However, the app offers a number of helpful features, including games, secret conversations and video calls.
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