Want to trick out WhatsApp so it’s the best-looking, most amazing chatting tool on your phone?
WhatsApp is one of the hottest social networking apps around thanks to features like WhatsApp voice calls, but as it’s still catching on in some countries there are a lot of people yet to work out all the tricks and tools available to them. Here are the best things you probably didn’t know about WhatsApp.
Hide Your WhatsApp Status, Last Seen & Profile Pic
You don’t always want everyone to know when you’re online, or whether you had a chance to see their last message. Sometimes you want a bit of time to think before you have these conversations.
You might also have good reason to make sure that only certain people see your profile picture. In fact, it’s pretty unlikely that you’d want anyone but your friends to see your profile picture at all.
Head to Settings > Account > Privacy and you can tweak all of your WhatsApp privacy settings. It’s worth noting that by default everyone — not just your contacts — can see your last seen time, status message and profile picture, which might be sharing a little too much.
Note, this is also where you’re able to turn off read receipts if you wish. However, if you do this you won’t be able to see other people’s read receipts.
Pay For A Friend
In some countries, WhatsApp is a paid service. If you live in one of these countries you’ve no doubt worked out how to pay for it yourself, but did you know you can pay for a friend too?
Head to Settings > Contacts > Pay For A Friend and you can pay using your Google Wallet from there. You can only pay for people who are in your contacts list.
Save Your WhatsApp Messages
Sometimes you need to get details out of WhatsApp and into something else. Maybe you need to send directions someone gave you to another friend, or maybe you just want to back up your conversation with a good friend.
Go to Settings > Conversations > Back Up Chats to do a manual backup to your SIM card, or choose “Email Chat” from the same menu to choose a chat to forward to an email address.
Run WhatsApp Without A SIM On a Tablet
Here’s a neat trick you can use in order to get a tablet up and running with WhatsApp. You’ll need to have a phone number with a SIM nearby that you can use.
Install WhatsApp on the tablet and then start the verification process. When the verification text message is sent to the phone you can enter the code manually into the tablet to verify.
Change the WhatsApp Wallpaper
Chatting on WhatsApp doesn’t have to be a bland experience, as it’s really easy to change the background. Head to Settings > Chats and Calls > Wallpaper and you can grab a new background from any of your files or Wallpaper apps. Never be boring again.
See Exactly When Messages Were Read
If you’re keen to check whether your friend knows about your party or not, you can easily see if they’ve read the messages you sent or not. Just view the conversation and look for the blue ticks and you know whether it’s been read (if they have read receipts turned on).
Need more info? Long-press on the particular message and you’ll be able to see exactly when that message was delivered and when it was read.
Create Shortcuts to Contacts
You probably have one or two contacts who you chat with all the time, like maybe a best friend or partner. If you want easier chatting access to these contacts, you can set up shortcuts for them.
Go into your previous chats, then long-press on the chat with the contact you want easy access to. Then choose “Add conversation shortcut” and it will add a handy shortcut widget to your home screen.
Check Your Data Use
No-one likes excessive data charges, so it’s worth being able to check how much data WhatsApp is using. Go to Settings > Account > Network Usage and you can get the full details of all your data usage.
If you want to keep your data usage down, go to Settings > Chat Settings > Media Auto-Download and choose how you’d like to download media while using mobile data, Wi-Fi and while roaming.
For some reason WhatsApp web is still a fairly well-kept secret, so it’s worth mentioning again how to use WhatsApp on your PC. Head to Web.WhatsApp.com and follow the instructions on screen to verify your account using the QR code and your phone. It’s pretty straightforward, but you will need to have your phone handy.
Transfer to a New Number Or Delete Your Account
Changing to a new mobile number doesn’t mean the end of your WhatsApp account — it’s possible to transfer it to the new number. Head to Settings > Account > Change Number to start the process. You’ll need to enter the old and the new number to migrate the data properly.
If for some reason you actually want to delete your account, head to Settings > Account > Delete My Account to get started. You can always start a new account later if you change your mind.
What Neat Tricks Can You Share?
If you’re looking for more tips and tricks to use with the app, be sure to take a look at how to recover accidentally deleted WhatsApp messages.
No doubt there are other neat tricks about WhatsApp that took you a while to realise were there. Feel free to share them in the comments!