Vanishing conversations are all the rage these days, and it’s one feature that WhatsApp notably lacks. Though everything that passes through WhatsApp is encrypted, that doesn’t really help when you say something you think better of upon further reflection. Enter WhatsApp’s “delete for everyone” feature, which does precisely what the name says – it allows you to delete your messages after you send them, preventing your conversation partners from seeing them.
Up until today, WhatsApp’s message recall was available for up to seven minutes after the message was sent. That’s a decent chunk of time to delete a message and send a new one if you discover you made a mistake, but recently, WhatsApp significantly increased that limit. According to WABetaInfo over on Twitter, you’ll now have more than an hour to delete any messages you send on the platform.
WhatsApp has silently delivered this change, packing it in with an update that’s mostly comprised of bug fixes. You’ll now have exactly 1 hour, 8 minutes, and 16 seconds to delete a message after you send it, which in an oddly specific amount of time that WhatsApp doesn’t elaborate on.
Still, we’re sure that WhatsApp users will care less about the exact amount of time and more about the fact that they have a much longer grace period to delete sent messages. There’s no explanation for why the time limit has expanded so dramatically, so it looks like WhatsApp doesn’t think this is a big enough feature to get singled out.
Perhaps this is setting the stage for something bigger? Maybe it won’t be long before we see WhatsApp adopt the vanishing messages feature we see in other apps like Snapchat? Time will tell, but for now, just sit back and enjoy the feeling of reckless abandon that comes along with knowing you have more than an hour to undo any poorly considered messages on WhatsApp.