One of the areas we get to see WhatsApp add new features to their app is through the beta channels. People are usually quick to notice what new features they have added with a new beta release and this is the latest one.
WABetaInfo has uncovered a nifty little feature with the latest WhatsApp for Android Beta release (ver. 2.19.71) that we have seen with other social networks.
WhatsApp has bolstered the authentication feature they were testing a while ago. If you enable ‘unlock with fingerprint’, taking screenshots will be blocked. WABetaInfo says that this feature is still not available yet
This is a surprisingly weird implementation for this kind of feature. In other social networks like Snapchat or in Telegram Secret Chats, the feature is on by default so there is no need to remember to enable fingerprint unlock for you to disable taking screenshots.
When people are sharing sensitive information, blocking screenshots by default gives the conversation an aura of ‘privacy’ where you are sure the other party won’t take screenshots to use it for other uses. In some cases like Telegram’s Secret Chat, screenshots are blocked by default in addition to an expiry timer which when you set, deletes everything in the chat when the time expires.
Despite the weird implementation by WhatsApp, this feature (when enabled) will become pretty useful to the multitudes of people that use WhatsApp. It is quite fortunate that on Android, we see fingerprint scanners on budget devices all the way to the fancy in-display ones on more expensive phones so this won’t be an issue.