WhatsApp group calling is on its way, going by the code spotted in the latest beta version for the iPhone app. While group voice calling for WhatsApp is pretty much confirmed due to multiple references, there is only a single mention of group video calls for the platform. Nonetheless, it will be a worthwhile addition to the app, which has been adding loads of features this year for its more than 1 billion users. However, it is not yet clear when WhatsApp would roll the features.
According to WABetaInfo, which reports on upcoming features of WhatsApp, the WhatsApp v2.17.70 beta for iPhone update has code references to group calls. "The 2.17.70 iOS update has very hidden references to group calls! Before it was an internal news, now it's all confirmed," WABetaInfo tweeted on Sunday, adding, "There are a lot of hidden references about group voice calls, but there is only one reference about group video calls. So group video calls are partially confirmed at the moment."
It was earlier reported that the Facebook-owned messaging app was working on a group voice calls and could release the feature next year. Facebook already has a similar feature on Messenger.
"WhatsApp 2.17.70 sends a request to the server to ask if the user you are calling is in another group call!" WaBetaInfo tweeted.
"Note that these references we found are very strong (but they aren't visible for you at present) and they have allowed us to understand what WhatsApp is going to add in the application, as we did for WhatsApp for iPad," it added. The WhatsApp watcher also reported that the iPhone app will soon give group administrators more power, with the ability to remove a greater number of participants from a group at once.
Separately, the WhatsApp v2.17.387 beta for Android brings new administrator features for groups, including the ability to choose whether participants can modify the subject of the group, its icon, and its description. There is also an option to prevent the group creator to be deleted from the group by other administrators.
According to WABetaInfo, the messaging app is also testing the Unsend and Delete for Everyone features.
Written with inputs from IANS