WhatsApp has included a feature to allow users the option of disabling the new read receipt feature.
An update to WhatsApp’s Android app now gives users the ability to disable the read receipt feature. The read receipt feature, more commonly known by two blue ticks, was itself a recently introduced feature which allows users know when a sent message has been received and read by its target recipient by using blue checkmarks. The new read receipt feature has generated some controversy as some users who do not wish to reveal to contacts whether or not they had read their messages made their feelings known.
The new version of the app for Android which is currently not available on Google’s Play Store can be downloaded from the WhatsApp site and side-loaded onto Android devices. Side-loading denotes installing applications on devices which were obtained from sources outside the official app store of the operating system which in the case of Android is the Google Play Store. Users who do not wish to wait for the update to become available via Play Store can side-load it by downloading it directly from the WhatsApp site but will have to allow installations from “Unknown Sources” in their Security Settings.
Before these recent updates, the application displayed one grey tick to indicate that a message had been successfully sent to WhatsApp’s servers and two grey ticks indicated when it had been successfully delivered to the recipient’s device. The read receipt update caused those two grey ticks to turn blue when recipients had read the message. WhatsApp at the moment are yet to disclose when the update incorporating ability to disable read receipts would be available to other platforms or when its Android application would be available on the Google Play Store despite questions to that effect being put forward to its spokesperson.