How to Send Disappearing Photos and Videos on WhatsApp?

Have you ever wanted to send pictures and videos that you prefer not to keep in the chat window of WhatsApp? If yes, WhatsApp will soon add what you are looking for. After confirming the feature in an interview recently, WhatsApp has started offering beta testers on Android the option to send lost photos and videos. This new feature is called “View Once” and you can use it like this: send self-destructing photos and videos After viewing on WhatsApp.

Send Disappearing Photos and Videos on WhatsApp (2021)

Before we begin, it’s worth noting that the “View Once” mode is only available to beta testers at the time of this writing. Therefore, you may not see the feature on your device right away. However, we can expect WhatsApp to roll out this feature to all users in the coming weeks.

What is “View Once” Mode in WhatsApp?

View Once is a new WhatsApp feature that allows users to exchange images and videos privately. Media sent using view-once mode will disappear after viewing by the recipient. Based on my testing, you can see if the recipient opens the image even if you have read receipts disabled. However, there are a few caveats you should keep in mind before using the feature. View Once mode is not as special as you might think.

Although pictures or videos are lost when the receiver closes it, the receiver can always take a screenshot. Moreover, WhatsApp will not notify you if the recipient takes a screenshot. In fact, WhatsApp openly acknowledges this limitation and makes it clear in a popup the first time you use View Once mode, implying that the messaging giant does not plan to implement a screenshot detection mechanism in the future. So, if you are considering sending private pictures through this new feature, you are better off with other secure messaging apps or Snapchat.

Once you have sent an image or video in View Once mode, you (the sender) cannot open it from the talk page. However, if you accidentally send a picture, you can delete the message for everyone before the recipient manages to open it.

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Disappearing Messages and View Once Mode in WhatsApp

You may be wondering that now WhatsApp has the option to send disappearing messages. And yes, it is. So what makes the new View Once feature different from disappearing messages? That’s what we’re going to explore in this chapter.

The main difference between Disappearing messages and View Once is the duration. Messages sent with the lost messages mod on WhatsApp will expire after 7 days, while photos and videos marked as View Once will disappear when the recipient opens the media file. Another way the new feature differs from disappearing messages is its scope. Disappearing messages affect all text and media files in the conversation, while View Once is limited to images and videos.

Steps to Send “View Once” Photos/Videos on WhatsApp

Now that you have an idea of ​​the new View Once feature and how it works, here’s how to use it in personal chats and groups:

1. Open a WhatsApp chat and choose an image or video From the media picker UI, just like you usually do to send photos and videos in the messaging app.choose picture from gallery

2. While on the page that allows you to write a caption before posting the photo or video, tap the new “View Once” button located in the lower right corner of the chat box. The icon turns green when you activate it.

photo set to view once whatsapp - disappearing photo whatsapp

3. As mentioned before, you cannot see the image you sent in the chat window. Instead, you’ll see text that says “Photo” and a clock icon next to it. Here’s what an image looks like when sent using the View Once mode for sender and recipient.

photo sent in view once in sender vs receiver mode - disappearing photo whatsapp
View Once mode in WhatsApp – Sender (left) and Recipient (right)

4. When the recipient opens the media file, the text “Photo” will automatically change to “Opened” to reflect the current status. This happens regardless of the read receipt privacy setting. I turned off read receipts on both devices and was able to see when the image was opened. You can long press the “Opened” chat bubble and tap the ‘i’ button to view the detailed message information of the photo/video.

view receipts once mode

Send Self-Destructing Photos and Videos on WhatsApp

This is how you use the new View Once feature to send expired photos and videos on WhatsApp. I wouldn’t recommend using it for private image or video exchange as the feature does not have a screenshot blocking or detection mechanism. However, it can be useful for other images that are not sensitive in nature. To learn more about such great WhatsApp features, check out our articles on how to mute archived chats on WhatsApp forever and how to recharge your Jio number using WhatsApp.

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