If you haven’t downloaded the latest version of WhatsApp or upgraded your current version, you are missing out on a lot of cool new features. We’ll talk about what’s new in the latest version of WhatsApp in a minute, but first we want to make sure that everyone knows how to download WhatsApp to get the newest version or update. Android smartphone users can download WhatsApp from the Google Play Store, which will automatically give you the newest version of the application that is available. If you already have WhatsApp installed on your Android phone and have automatic updates turned off, you can update from the Play Store too. Just search in Google Play for “WhatsApp” and the button that normally says “Install” will say “Update” if your version is out of date.
Ok, but what makes the newest version of WhatsApp any different from the older ones?
The short answer is: a lot. The new WhatsApp update has several additions, some of which are functional and some are just pure fun.
WhatsApp’s Newest Practical Features
Did you feel like WhatsApp new voice calling feature was using up a lot of your mobile data? Apparently you weren’t the only one, and your voices were heard. In the latest update, you can reduce the amount of data that WhatsApp voice calls eat up. Just go to your WhatsApp Settings, and then go to Chats and Calls. All the way at the bottom, check the box to limit data use during calls.
If you are OCD about notifications to the point that they keep you from being a productive member of society, the newest version of WhatsApp lets you personalize notifications, mark chats as read (or unread), and even silence an individual chat, find more info.
Lastly, if your friend forwards someone’s contact details to you in a WhatsApp message, you can now easily send that person a message or add them to your contacts.
WhatsApp’s Newest Fun Features
Most of the publicity around the latest WhatsApp update has to do with some fun new emojis. For the first time, you can hover over certain emojis and select from several different skin tones (for example, the human-looking faces, baby angels, hand gestures, etc.). While you might not find one that looks just like you, it feels like a really nice gesture towards inclusivity. Speaking of hand gestures… tucked in among your standard pointing finger and muscle arm, you will now find a big ol’ middle finger (also available in multiple skin tones). That should silence any doubts that WhatsApp is just trying to be politically correct with the new skin colors.
Last but not least, to honor Leonard Nemoy, the actor who played Dr. Spock on the original Star Trek series, who recently passed away, you can also find the hand gesture of the Vulcan greeting (fingers forming a “V” between the middle and ring finger). What are you waiting for? Updating is easy, so go download the latest version of WhatsApp, and live long and prosper.