With one week left before the year ends, it is safe to assume that WhatsApp’s long-awaited voice calls feature will not roll out in 2014. However, recent findings have revealed that the popular messaging app may be ready to roll out this feature pretty soon, judging from code taken from the latest version of the app.
Back at MWC 2014 in February, WhatsApp CEO Jan Koum revealed that WhatsApp will be rolling out voice calling as a new feature on the app. Since then, there has been nothing official from the company, presumably due to delays in testing. Sure, we’ve seen leaks before like this batch of screenshots released all the way back in March 2014, but things have been very quiet since then. Thanks to Android enthusiasts, we can now have a glimpse of what it may look like on Android.
According to source code found on the version of WhatsApp that can be downloaded from the company’s website (the “experimental” version that receives more updates than the version found on the Play Store), there are several hidden features within the code that are related to future voice calling function. The developers then put these codes to a test and unveiled several screenshots that proves that voice calls are obviously in the work and hopefully, should be released soon.
From the screenshots, things looks pretty much the same as what we saw on iOS earlier this year. There’s a standard call-handling screen that shows the status of your calls, along with a text across the screen that reads “WhatsApp Call”.
In addition to that, thanks to more screenshots shared this time round, we can see that the calling feature is separated from the chat function, and gets its own handle for dialing, call logs, contacts screen and such. Of course, the basic things like missed call notification will be shown in the chat log. Interestingly, it looks like you can even record down your calls to be played back at a later time though, we’re pretty sure that will raise some concern when it comes to privacy.
Will WhatsApp finally launch a call functionality this year? Let’s keep our fingers crossed for this one but I’m not quite sure if the telcos will feel the same as us.