Whatsapp Group Message on iPhone XSource: Luke Filipowicz/iMore

What you need to know

  • WhatsApp is working on a new privacy control that will limit who can see users' "Last Seen" status.
  • Users will be able to allow all contacts to see the status except specific ones.

WhatsApp is working on a new privacy feature that will allow users to have greater control over who can and cannot see their "last Seen" Status.

As reported by WABetaInfo, WhatsApp is now testing the ability to give all of a user's contacts access to their "Last Seen" status while also preventing some specific contacts from seeing it at all.

Whatsapp Last Seen Privacy ScreenSource: WABetaInfo

WABetaInfo explains the change:

Several years ago WhatsApp has implemented 3 privacy settings: Last Seen, Profile Picture, About. These settings allow you to decide who can see those data when interacting with you on WhatsApp. To manage these privacy settings, WhatsApp has implemented 3 options: Everyone, My Contacts, Nobody.

This means that, if you didn't want a specific contact could see your last seen, you had to set the privacy setting of your last seen to "Nobody". Today WhatsApp is finally working to introduce another option called "My contacts except…", so you can finally enable your last seen back, and you can disable it for specific contacts!

This is an important privacy change because it gives users more granular control over who will be able to see the last time they were in the WhatsApp app. That could be vital for some, and it's a welcome change.

The new feature is currently being tested and there's no indication of when we should expect it to make its way to the version of WhatsApp that's in the App Store. Hopefully the wait won't be too long, though.

WhatsApp continues to be one of the best iPhone instant messaging apps around and it's great to see a focus on privacy here.