WhatsApp is developing a feature that would see the app extend beyond pure messaging and into content curation. Specifically, the Meta-owned communication app is working on a “Newsletter” feature that would deliver private information to users about their favorite content creators.
WaBetaInfo reports there is code in WhatsApp Messenger bet version 188.8.131.52 on Android that names the Newsletter feature. Currently under development, the name could be a codename but there is information in the code that points to the purpose of the feature.
It seems this is a one-to-many broadcast solution that will have its own section on the WhatsApp Status tab. This means it will not be integrated into encrypted chats.
Newsletter allows users to control what content they receive. It will display the content they select in chronological order, maybe something like Flipboard. It is unclear how WhatsApp will allow users to see content that the company does not own.
There is no mention of including ads on the feature. WhatsApp does not currently have ads, so it would be a huge change for the app to make Newsletter an ad-driven feature. However, there does not seem to be a subscription code either. Of course, the feature is in very early development, so it is open to change or never being launched.
Future development may focus on building an algorithm that will allow the Newsletter feature to curate content and recommend it to users. Newsletter curation is not a massive sector these days, so it will be interesting to see if WhatsApp pursues this feature.
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