You know the embarrassing feeling you get when you drop a message at the wrong door? And Oops! There’s no remedy to the fiasco. Many users have anticipated this feature to enable them to retract, revoke or delete those embarrassing messages from a recipient’s mobile phone. Skype has the feature, and so does BBM. If you use neither of those, here’s a good news: the feature is rolling out gradually and is already visible to some WhatsApp users who have the latest update.
The WhatsApp message retract feature has been in development for almost a year but has officially started trickling out to some users on Android, iPhone, and Windows Phone apps.
The feature which was made public in a blog post lets you revoke or delete an already sent message which you do not want your recipient to receive. For this to take effect, however, both you and your recipient should have installed the latest version of WhatsApp and it only works for messages that have been sent in the last seven minutes, unlike the revoke feature on Skype.
The feature works on all kinds of messages including texts, images, GIFs, documents, and videos. Revoking a message is pretty easy with the latest update. You simply highlight the text and select delete from the menu. Hit the delete button and voila, the message is gone!
WhatsApp explains this feature vividly in the FAQ section. It says:
‘This is particularly useful if you sent a message to the wrong chat or if the message you sent contains a mistake.
Messages you successfully delete for everyone will be replaced with ‘This message was deleted’ in your recipients’ chats (*). Similarly, if you see ‘This message was deleted’ in a chat, it means that the sender deleted their message for everyone.’
WhatsApp explained further that there are limitations to the success of the feature. The delete feature can only be successfully retracted if the recipient is yet to read the message. If it’s the other way round, ‘delete for everyone’ will certainly be unsuccessful. ‘You will not be notified if deleting for everyone was not successful’ it explained further.
If you haven’t got the feature just yet, slow down chief, the feature is rolling out slowly and sooner, it will get to your turn.
Here’s how to to delete messages for everyone:
- Open WhatsApp and go to the chat containing the message you wish to delete.
- Tap and hold the message > choose Deletefrom the menu. Optionally, select more messages to delete multiple messages at once.
- Tap Delete > Delete for Everyone.