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WhatsApp update to include voicemail

WhatsApp has been undergoing an array of changes lately, from the roll-out of its end-to-end chat encryption to document exchange, but now it plans to add voicemail, call-back options and ZIP file sharing support.

The Facebook-owned chat service has slowly been evolving its original service to become a multi-functional service for its users.

WhatsApp has already established the voice over internet protocol (VoIP) aspect with its service, however it now plans to expand the feature with call-back and voicemail support, ensuring its active users never miss a call again.

Also on the agenda are ZIP files. ZIP files are single archives of multiple files, which not only condenses several files into one, but it also helps reduce the overall file size. The new feature will enable users to exchange heavy files via WhatsApp.

WhatsApp has yet to confirm these updates.

Earlier this month, WhatsApp announced it had strengthened the default encryption setting on its service, meaning messages sent will now only be accessible to the sender and recipient.

“The idea is simple: when you send a message, the only person who can read it is the person or group chat that you send that message to. No one can see inside that message,” WhatsApp said in a blog post announcing the update. “Not cyber-criminals. Not hackers. Not oppressive regimes. Not even us.

Despite WhatsApp calls not being permitted in the UAE, as more companies move towards VoIP calls, UAE telecoms du and Etisalat face some pressure. Recently a member of the Federal National Council (FNC) called the UAE’s ban on voice calls via apps, including Snapchat and WhatsApp an “international embarrassment”.

However, during the FNC session, Hamad Al Mansouri, director-general of the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority, argued that VoIP services had been blocked due to concerns over cyber-crime and state security, and said they would continue to be blocked indefinitely.

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