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WhatsApp could soon let you 'silently' leave group chats

How to tell if you've been blocked on WhatsApp
(Image credit: Future)

Update: WhatsApp gets an upgrade to make group calls less painful.

Currently, when you leave a WhatsApp group, a notification will be posted in the chat informing every member of your decision to vacate the group. In most instances, this isn’t a huge problem but if you want to quietly step out of a WhatsApp group without facing any awkward questions, it can be a little irritating having your exit practically announced by megaphone. 

That’s where this new WhatsApp feature comes in handy. As reported by WABetaInfo (opens in new tab), WhatsApp is currently testing out the ability to leave a group chat discreetly. This new feature lets users leave groups without a notification being posted for everybody to see. Instead, your departure will only be flagged to the group admins. 

WhatsApp silently leave group chats feature in testing

(Image credit: Wabetainfo)

Thanks to this WhatsApp feature, everybody else in the chat won’t know you’ve left unless you either tell them yourself, or they scroll through the participant list and notice your user name is no longer there. This is a minor feature overall, but it’s a useful one nevertheless. For many WhatsApp users, it’s not uncommon to find yourself unwilling to leave an irrelevant group chat for fear of facing uncomfortable questions about your departure. 

This feature was first hinted at last month, but it’s now apparently in beta testing. WABetaInfo has obtained a screenshot of the WhatsApp desktop app that shows a new exit prompt that reads: "Only you and group admins will be notified that you left the group." Presumably, this feature will also be made able on mobile devices when it exits testing and is ready to be rolled out to all users. 

Unfortunately, there are no confirmed rollout details for this new feature. As noted, it’s currently in beta testing, and there is technically no guarantee it will ever be made available to all users. However, this is definitely a feature that would be well received by most users, so we expect to see it included in a future update. 

As also reported by WABetaInfo (opens in new tab), WhatsApp is also testing rich link previews in status updates. So instead of seeing only a link in a status update, a rich link preview would show a preview of the website you're linking to.

Speaking of new WhatsApp features, the popular messaging app just got a major update earlier this month that includes a whole suite of long-awaited upgrades. And WhatsApp also cut off support for iOS 10 and iOS 11. Plus, there are also reports that WhatsApp may soon offer tablet and multi-device support, two features that are long overdue.  

Rory Mellon

Rory is a Deals Editor at Tom’s Guide based in the UK. He covers a wide range of topics but with a particular focus on deals, gaming and streaming. When he’s not scouring retailers for PS5 restock or writing hot takes on the latest gaming hardware and streaming shows, he can be found attending music festivals and being thoroughly disappointed by his terrible football team.