WhatsApp is one of the most popular messaging apps on the planet, largely because of its rich set of features. However, up until now, a particularly interesting one has been missing from the experience.  That is, of course, the ability to send self-destructing photos and videos to other users.

On August 3, 2021, WhatsApp announced on its blog that it was rolling out a new View Once feature that lets users send photos and videos that disappear after being opened.

The much-desired feature is a cool one, and it doesn’t take too much effort to send self-destructing messages to others using WhatsApp.

If you’re wondering how to send one of these then just follow the steps below.

  1. Select the contact you’d like to send a View Once message to
  2. Tap on the paperclip or camera icon to send a photo or video.
  3. After taking or selecting an image or video to send, tap on the “1” icon in the caption field and then press the send button like you normally would.

Unlike the traditional way of sending an image using WhatsApp, a “View Once” image or video will only show an icon instead of a preview.

After you’ve viewed a self-destructing WhatsApp image it will be marked opened, and you can leave it on your screen for as long as you want before returning back to the chat. However, once you do return, you won’t be able to open it again.

As WhatsApp warns, it is still possible for someone to take a screenshot of your picture. After testing it out, I’ve noticed there is no notification that goes back to the sender when someone does take a screenshot of a self-destructing WhatsApp message. So, even though the image or video can only be seen once, you will still need to be cautious about what you’re sending.

If the photo or video is very sensitive in nature, you may want to opt for using a different app. Snapchat, for instance, has ways of notifying you when someone takes a screenshot or a message you sent.

Either way, rest assured knowing that WhatsApp messages are end-to-end encrypted, meaning that no one will be able to see what you’ve sent except for the intended recipient.

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