WhatsApp to Allow Users to Edit Messages

    WhatsApp to Allow Users to Edit Messages
    Last updated May 23, 2023
    Image credit: Unsplash


    • On Monday, the popular messaging app WhatsApp introduced the highly requested feature of allowing users to edit their messages up to 15 minutes after sending them.[1]
    • WhatsApp’s parent company, Meta Platforms, announced the changes in a blog post stating: "For the moments when you make a mistake or simply change your mind, you can now edit your sent messages on WhatsApp."[2]
    • To edit a message, a WhatsApp user must simply press down on their message until a menu of options appears and select the “Edit” function. While altered messages will show that they were “edited,” prior iterations of the message won't be displayed.[3]
    • Until the new feature becomes available to users in the coming weeks, the only way to edit a WhatsApp message involves deleting it and crafting an entirely new one.[4]
    • Meta’s decision to bring editing to WhatsApp comes after competing messenger apps, Telegram and Signal, introduced such features. With Twitter also introducing an editing feature for paid Twitter Blue subscribers, Meta has consequently come under fire for allegedly copying features from rival platforms.[5]
    • WhatsApp has 2B global users, with India possessing the largest market of 487M. While many believe WhatsApp is late to the party of enabling message editing, Meta’s flagship company Facebook introduced the feature nearly a decade ago.[6]


    Narrative A

    WhatsApp has listened to its users by allowing them to edit their messages after they're sent. From correcting misspellings to fixing grammatical errors or adding needed context, users will have the power to alter messages in the way they see fit. Messages will display that they are edited, but prior messages will be removed and protected by Meta’s world-class encryption.

    Narrative B

    Meta platforms continue to lag behind competitors and adopt popular features from rivals. Not only is WhatsApp way behind in allowing users to edit their messages, but it also only grants a 15-minute window to correct errors. However, these are only trivial problems for Meta as WhatsApp has come under severe scrutiny for its inability to protect user data.

    Nerd narrative

    There's a 5% chance that Meta Platforms will sell Instagram or WhatsApp before 2025, according to the Metaculus prediction community.

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