WhatsApp Status got a fresh lease of life with the debut of the photos- and videos-based statuses, but this meant the end of the old text status on the app. At least for a while. With users clamouring for their old WhatsApp text status, the Facebook-owned company has finally brought it back, within a week of promising to do so. However, the feature is only available for Android users at present, while iPhone users on WhatsApp will get it "soon."
In order to get the WhatsApp text status, all you need to do is to update the app. Go to Google Play marketplace and make sure that the app's version number is v2.17.107; in case the version number is not the same, you simply need to update the app from Google Play as WhatsApp has made the build available publicly.
To change your WhatsApp text status,click the three-dot menu on the top left, then, head to Settings, and in the About and in the phone number section, you will see the old WhatsApp status option back. It comes with the old default options of 'Available', 'Busy', 'At school', 'At the movies', etc, and more importantly does not disappear in 24 hours. Your contact list will be able to see the Status message by opening your contact, when starting a new chat thread, or viewing group info.
As mentioned earlier, all WhatsApp users on Android will only get the feature now; however iPhone users should also get it soon. Also, it may be the rollout is gradual, so you may not see the feature immediately, but it should arrive on your Android device in a few days.
While the old text status is back, it is important to note that the new WhatsApp Status stories feature isn't going anywhere and will remain a constant in a separate tab. You can add photos and videos that disappear in 24 hours, just like Snapchat. The tab also lists all the new updates from your contacts in the same format as you see on Snapchat. Unfortunately, there's no way (yet) to disable this WhatsApp feature completely.
Separately, WhatsApp is also testing the GIF support on Google's Gboard keyboard app in the latest version of Android beta, Android Police reports. While WhatsApp introduced full-fledged GIF support a while ago, it didn't work if the user opted to use Google's Gboard instead of the in-app keyboard. However, in the latest beta, you can search for GIFs, choose one, and send it to a WhatsApp thread using Gboard just like the way you did it with the in-app keyboard.
If you wish to try this feature immediately, you must sign up for the beta program, and be on the latest beta version 2.17.110. Furthermore, you can alternatively download it directly from APK Mirror as well.