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WhatsApp is one of the most popular and widely used free apps on smartphones irrespective of the platform they operate on.

This app not only supports the ability to send and receive messages to and from people in your Contacts list but also send a message to a group of people at the same time. You can also broadcast messages so that they get delivered to each person individually. Ever since it was first developed, WhatsApp has undergone various transformations, making the app more and more user friendly and interesting each time. Needless to say, this has largely contributed towards the increase in number of people using the app with each passing day.

In the recent past, WhatsApp has undergone various updates across iOS, Android and Windows platforms. With regard to the first two operating systems mentioned, WhatsApp offers not just one or two pivotal updates but quite a few of them. Of these updates, the following five features are worth noting.

Zoom-In Videos While They Play

All of us are used to zooming in photos to see even the minutest details with the utmost clarity. And most of us would have definitely appreciated the idea of having this feature for videos as well. Giving due consideration to these thoughts, the WhatsApp app version for iOS and Android has been updated with the facility to support “in-play” video zoom functionality. Now you can enjoy each and every bit of the video streamlining on your handset. This is sure to be really helpful, especially in instances when you are watching the video on a smartphone with a small screen size. The method of zooming a video is exactly the same as that of zooming a photo. Just pinch two fingers together on the screen that is playing the video.

Sharing (Sending and Receiving) PDFs with Others

All along, you could share photos, videos, audio clips, contacts from your address book, and even your location with others using WhatsApp. But, to share a PDF document, you had to rely on your good old email. With the all new WhatsApp, even this is possible. Yes, you heard it right. You can send and receive PDFs from Dropbox, iCloud Drive, and Google Drive and other such apps present on the phone. To do this sharing, click on the arrow on the bottom left corner of the screen. While document sharing is now restricted to PDF formats only, the app is working on making it possible to share other document types as well. This is expected to roll out soon. To make space for the PDF document sharing icon, WhatsApp has combined the two separate Photo and Video sharing options into a single option called the Camera option.

The only restriction is that the size of the file being sent or received should not exceed 100MB. There is also one other point to be considered when you send your buddies a PDF file. Make sure that they have updated their WhatsApp to the latest version from the app store. If they have not done so, they will not receive the files you send even if they appear as sent from your side.

Photo Sharing Enhancement

The concept of photo sharing by itself is not new to WhatsApp. You could and can still attach photos from your gallery. These photos include both those you got from other WhatsApp contacts and those you shot using your camera. Following an enhancement to this feature, just like PDF sharing, you can share pictures stored across other apps on your smartphone with other WhatsApp users.

Livelier Chat Backgrounds

If you find the standard background of your WhatsApp chat window boring, you can now bring more life to the same by choosing a solid color of your preference. To go beyond the plain look, go ahead and select your favorite photo from the photo library or the gallery. The all new WhatsApp features a horde of block colors worth exploring. A simple click on the Settings menu allows you to change the existing color to that of your choice. It is much the same process to reset the new color to the original one.

Storage Issue

Despite all the plus points, one sore point that WhatsApp presented with its earlier versions is that it took up a lot of space on the user’s handset and caused it to slow down in terms of performance. In the updated version, some crashes have been resolved and the storage space constraint has been taken care of.

Apart from the above five key updates, some other simple and yet fascinating updates include the ability to support five new languages, more than a hundred extra emojis, and Marshmallow permission support if you are using Android.