Meta plans to launch a new broadcasting feature in the form of broadcasting channels for its WhatsApp messaging service.
Meta Said, “The new Channels feature is akin to a private broadcast service in which people and organizations can send messages and updates to followers that are separate from the kinds of interpersonal communications that occur between WhatsApp users.”
Admins of WhatsApp channels will be able to send text, photos, stickers, videos, and polls to their followers, who cannot reply to the messages. The admins of channels won’t be allowed to add followers to their channels, which will have a backup of messages for 30 days before their deletion.
WhatsApp said in a blog post, “Unlike more conventional WhatsApp messages, channels will not use end-to-end encryption so that they can reach a wide audience. End-to-end encrypted channels may eventually debut in the future for groups like nonprofits or health organizations that want their communications to be more secure.”
WhatsApp added, “WhatsApp users will eventually be able to find Channels they want to join in a searchable directory. They will be able to access the Channels they follow via a new ‘Updates’ tab. The tab would be separate from your chats with family, friends, and communities.”
WhatsApp’s ultimate plan is to allow anyone to create a WhatsApp channel.
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg recently said, “WhatsApp will be the next chapter for the social networking company, representing an opportunity for Meta to build a lucrative business akin to Instagram and the core Facebook app.”
Meta said in the blog post, “The Company thinks there is an opportunity to support admins with a way for them to build a business around their channel using our expanding payment services as well as the ability to promote certain channels in the directory to help increase awareness.”