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Published 18:36 IST, April 22nd 2024

WhatsApp to launch ‘People Nearby’ feature for transferring data to nearby devices

The use of this feature becomes evident in scenarios where individuals wish to share documents with nearby individuals without revealing their phone numbers.

Reported by: Business Desk
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WhatsApp | Image: Unsplash
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In the latest WhatsApp beta version 2.24.9.22 for Android, WABetaInfo uncovered a redesigned UI for the "People Nearby" feature. The update introduces several new elements and provides detailed information on the necessary permissions, including media, location, and local network access.

Compared to the earlier January beta, which initially unveiled the "People Nearby" feature with basic interfaces for device discoverability and file transfer, this new UI appears more polished and closer to being ready for prime time. However, it's not yet available to all WhatsApp beta testers, indicating a potential wait before it reaches the stable channel.

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The onscreen text highlights that file sharing via "People Nearby" is end-to-end encrypted, reassuring users that their phone numbers remain private during the process. These privacy measures were also present in the initial version of the feature.

The use of this feature becomes evident in scenarios where individuals wish to share documents or images with nearby individuals without revealing their phone numbers. The inclusion of discoverability toggles ensures users only receive files from trusted sources and when desired.

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In other developments, WhatsApp is reportedly developing a "Favorites" tab for conveniently accessing preferred contacts or groups. Details regarding any limitations on the number of favourites one can add or their integration within the Chats tab remains unclear.

Users can expect the ability to add, remove, or reorder favourites directly from the main Settings page, positioned just below the Accounts section. Further insights into this "Favorites" tab are anticipated in forthcoming releases of the messaging application.

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(With Reuters inputs)

18:36 IST, April 22nd 2024