WhatsApp is reportedly rolling out a new update for Android smartphones that offers the ability to create communities. The feature is said to be available to a limited number of beta testers at the moment. The Meta-owned communication platform was previously spotted working on a communities tab. This upcoming feature is said to allow WhatsApp users to create ‘communities’ that can host up to 10 sub-groups with up to 512 participants in each sub-group.
According to a report by WhatsApp feature tracker WABetaInfo, the WhatsApp for Android beta version 18.104.22.168 brings the ability to create a community. This feature is currently available to a limited number of beta testers, as per the report.
This update reportedly replaces the camera tab on the top left corner of the app with the communities tab. This tab is said to allow users to create a community with up to 10 sub-groups, according to the feature tracker, while a sub-group is said to be capable of supporting up to 512 participants.
The report further mentions that community members can select a sub-group of their choosing when they join a new community. They are reportedly also allowed to leave sub-groups without leaving the community. Community admins are understood to have the ability to disable a community. This update reportedly also allows members to report a community to WhatsApp.
WhatsApp reportedly automatically creates an announcement group when a user creates a new community. This group can purportedly be used by community admins to share messages that are always visible to all members of the community.
WhatsApp for Android beta version 22.214.171.124 is reportedly also compatible with the communities feature. However, users are said to be capable of joining communities if the feature is enabled for their accounts. Even after installing the compatible updates, users might not be able to join communities even after being added by a community admin, according to WABetaInfo.
As per a recent report, WhatsApp is also working on a feature that would allow users to hide their phone numbers from specific WhatsApp sub-groups of a community, via a setting that is expected to be available once the feature is rolled out to all users.