WhatsApp has been an easy and quick way to send photos and videos to friends and family for quite some time now, but it looks like the chat service is looking to expand on that feature by allowing users to send any kind of file they want.
A new feature is being tested in beta with a small portion of users, according to a report from WABetaInfo, and it should roll out to all 1.2 billion WhatsApp users at some point in the near future. The report notes that you’ll be able to share any files with a contact or group of contacts, as long as that file falls under 128MB on Android, 100MB on iOS, and 64MB on the WhatsApp web app.
The feature certainly is a nice addition for WhatsApp users — and will help make the app even more popular than it already is. Of course, there are some concerns with the change. For example, allowing users to send any kind of file could help promote the spread of malicious files that could infect phones and ultimately damage the phones or the file quality on those devices. Not only that, but it will be helpful for people who want to pirate and share apps, as the feature does allow for the sharing of APK files.
Still, despite the concerns the pros far outweigh the cons, and it helps position WhatsApp to start becoming more a platform than just a messaging service, like Facebook Messenger has done.
WhatsApp has been getting increasingly useful over the past few months, and that’s only set to continue. Recently it was reported that the service would soon start allowing businesses to chat directly with customers, which is also something that Facebook Messenger has started doing in the past year or so.
It makes sense that WhatsApp would want to evolve into a platform — the Facebook-owned service is already in the hand of over a billion people, and Facebook Messenger’s evolution into a platform has been relatively successful. It will be interesting to see if WhatsApp can ultimately offer anything that Facebook can’t — or if they simply transition into platforms alongside each other.