If you’re a WhatsApp user, you should see a small but useful change start rolling into the app. As we, the app will now light up its double-check marks blue when a message has been read.

If the read receipts don’t seem new to you, you’re probably not alone. Many users have misinterpreted the double check marks next to messages to indicate that a message has been looked at, as so may other platforms offer the feature, but that’s not the case.

In reality, the double check marks simply mean a message has been received by the other user (the single check only tells you the message reached WhatsApp’s servers). The blue coloring adds a third layer of information, as an updated FAQ will confirm.

Alternatively, you can long press on a message to access a ‘Message Info‘ screen, detailing the times when the message was received, read or played.

Of course, one could use ‘last seen’ indicators on the top left of a conversation to know when a contact was last in the app, but the blue checkmarks are more direct. It would have been nice to see this added in as an on opt-out feature though – some users may not be so fond of the additional information.

WhatsApp is the go-to IM’ing app for most smartphone users out there. While the app itself is feature-rich in a lot of ways, there’s always room for improvement, and today, WhatsApp is rolling out a new feature over-the-air that enable users to see if their message has been read by the recipient.

While we wait for Facebook / WhatsApp to push out an update to make the app compatible with the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus, the new ‘message read’ feature, which is currently being rolled out, is enough to pique the interest of users in a lot of ways.

WhatsApp Messenger

The feature is not available as an update which can be picked up from the Google Play Store or the iTunes App Store, and instead, as we mentioned before, available as an OTA. And since everything happens in the background, you won’t even get a notification if the update has even made it to your device.

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The ‘read message’ feature is downright simple to use and understand; when you send an IM to a recipient, you will see double grey ‘ticks’ underneath your string of text, confirming that your message has been delivered, but if the user on the other end has opened WhatsApp and glanced at your message, then those double ticks will turn blue. Keep one thing in mind, the ticks will only go blue if your message has been read by opening the app on the other end, if it remains gray, then it’s safe to assume that the person on the other end is ignoring you. Ouch.

And to add misery to proceedings, WhatsApp will also show you exactly when the message was read (read: time).

WhatsApp FAQ

The second feature is voice over IP (VoIP) support in WhatsApp, and is something which we’re sure many users are eagerly waiting to get their hands on. As leaked by Dutch outlet DroidApp.nl [Google Translate], it’s clear that WhatsApp’s plan to bring voice support to the masses is still on track. But when will the new feature hit our iPhones or Android devices is still a mystery.

Let’s just keep our fingers crossed that it happens soon enough.

You can download WhatsApp for iPhone here, and Android from here.

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