WhatsApp introduced new privacy settings for Groups earlier this week, helping prevent spam group invites that have been a pain point for many users. At the time of the announcement, the Facebook-owned company had said the new settings are now available for select users, and would roll out all users in the coming weeks. Ahead of that though, the settings are available in the Android beta and iPhone beta apps, and you can use these versions in case you're keen to experience it ahead of its official rollout.
The new WhatsApp group invite settings are now visible in the v2.19.92 beta and the latest v2.19.93 beta for Android, and the v188.8.131.52 beta for iPhone. While it is simple to get onto the Android beta via the Google Play beta testing programme, and alternatively, sideload via APK Mirror, it's significantly harder to do so for iPhone users, as they will need to be a part of the limited TestFlight programme. The availability of the feature for the iPhone beta version was spotted by WABetaInfo, a WhatsApp beta version tracker. Thus, if you are an Android smartphone user and want to try the new privacy settings for Group invites, you can simply join the Google Play beta programme, or sideload the app version from APK Mirror (linked above).
To recall, the new privacy settings for WhatsApp groups invites is meant to help users choose who can add them to groups. It can be accessed by going to Settings > Account > Privacy > Groups. Here, you can select between Everyone, My Contacts, and Nobody. If you select the Nobody option, you'll have to approve joining every WhatsApp group to which you're invited. However, the My Contacts option will enable users you have in your address book to add you to groups. There will also be the Everyone option that won't add any restriction.
In case if you've selected the Nobody option, the person inviting you to a group will be asked to send you a private invite through an individual chat. The private invite will expire three days after its receipt. Moreover, similar would be the case if you will select the My Contacts option and someone who's not from your address book attempts to invite you to a group.
We discussed what WhatsApp absolutely needs to do in 2019, on Orbital, our weekly technology podcast, which you can subscribe to via Apple Podcasts or RSS, download the episode, or just hit the play button below.