WhatsApp is Testing Group Voice Chats Similar to Twitter Spaces

Connect up to 32 people in a group voice chat without notifying everyone

  • WhatsApp is testing a new group voice chat feature.
  • The feature is similar to Twitter Spaces, where any group member will be able to join the voice chat.
  • The new group voice chats will be kept different from the existing audio calls feature.

WhatsApp has been spotted testing a new voice chat feature for groups. This feature allows up to 32 people in a group to connect to a single voice chat. The concept is very similar to Twitter Spaces, where multiple people can join and talk together.

The new voice chat for groups feature was first spotted by WABetaInfo in the latest beta version of WhatsApp. As of now, any person in the group can initiate a voice chat and other members of the group will be able to join the chat. The feature currently only supports a maximum of 32 participants.

How To Use Voice Chat in WhatsApp Groups

According to the screenshots provided by WABetaInfo, a new waveform-like icon will be added next to the group name. When a user taps on the icon, a group voice chat will be initiated. Note that other members of the group are not notified when a new voice chat is started.

group voice chat in WhatsApp
Image: WABetaInfo

As per reports, there are no restrictions on who can join the group voice chat. Any person who is a member of the group can join the group voice chat by using the “Connect” button. This option will appear just below the name of the group when a voice chat is active in the group.

It was also noticed that the voice chat closes automatically when no other person joins the chat for 60 minutes. However, there are no upper limits for the time duration of the voice chat, if more than one member is present.

The voice chat feature can only be used on the mobile version, and not on WhatsApp Web. Users who have access to this feature have also reported that it was not accessible on the desktop version of WhatsApp.

WhatsApp Group Chats: Expected Date for Stable Release

The new group voice chat feature in WhatsApp is currently available for beta users on Android. However, it appears that not all beta users have access to this feature. In general, WhatsApp usually conducts beta-testing of new features for 1-2 weeks, before releasing them on the stable version.

It is expected that this feature will be released for all users by next month. Currently, the new group voice chats are being spotted predominantly among Android users.

WhatsApp has been pretty active in releasing new features this year. Recently, it introduced a video chat feature in individual chats, where users are able to send short snippets of videos to each other, just like Snapchat. The major difference is that WhatsApp keeps these video messages in the chat even after viewing the message, unlike Snapchat.