WhatsApp Channels Lets Users Follow Brands And Influencers: Following Telegram's Lead

WhatsApp Channels

After Telegram introduced the Channels feature, it quickly became one of the most-visited places on the platform.

WhatsApp is the largest messaging platform out there, and it sees the Telegram feature as something that could be used to boost itself to new height. This is why, following the Facebook 'tradition' of copying others' feature and blatantly claiming its own, the company then named Meta, makes WhatsApp copy the Telegram feature.

Through the feature called WhatsApp Channels, users can share updates or information with many other users on WhatsApp.

For example, users can join the official WhatsApp Channel to learn about the latest updates on the platform.

The feature was initially introduced to a small group of people.

This time, the Telegram rival is rolling out the Channels feature in 150 countries, making it globally available.

Rolling out globally, users should be able to create their own channels.

For those who wish to find channels to follow, they can simply head to the 'updates' tab in the WhatsApp app, or check out WhatsApps' directory for see a list of channels.

WhatsApp users can filter the channels in the directory and join the ones with the most followers, the most active, and more.

Do note that WhatsApp users can join a channel only with a valid invite link.

"Keep your app up to date and you should be able to start channeling soon," WhatsApp said.

"As we roll channels out globally, you can follow channels in our directory for now. over the next few months, we’ll make it so anyone can create a channel."

To promote this, Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the rollout of WhatsApp Channels in his own channel.

WhatsApp also collaborates with a number of influencers to help market the feature to more people.

For privacy reasons, no one can see what channels other people followed.

"Your contacts can't see when you follow a channel, unless they are the channel admin," explained WhatsApp.

And to further preserve users' privacy, the' phone number of the Channel owner shall not be shared.

But due to the public nature of Channels, messages that are broadcast in channels aren't end-to-end protected.

Messages sent via WhatsApp Channels shall be available for 30 days.

"WhatsApp Channels are a private way for people to receive updates that matter to them, right within WhatsApp, said Meta in a blog post.

And because Channels are like a "one-to-many broadcast," followers cannot comment. All they can do, is use Reactions.

While the platform won't show users Reactions from other followers, but others can see the number and type of Reactions being used.