WhatsApp tests sending photos in ‘original quality’


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The messaging-platform sleuths at WABetaInfo have uncovered yet another feature WhatsApp is trialing through its Google Play Beta program. The new update, with version number, allows users to send photos in their original size and quality.

As is usually the case with these updates, while it may sound useful, keep in mind it’s still in development. There’s no telling when it’ll show up and things can change at short notice. You know the drill by now.

No more squinting at pixels on WhatsApp

According to WABetaInfo’s report, the messaging app will finally allow users to choose the quality of the photos they send. WABetaInfo reckons this will take the form of a cog icon next to the currently available image editing tools.

What isn’t known yet is whether this ‘original quality’ setting is another way of saying uncompressed or if WhatsApp will still compress the image a little to reduce file size. We certainly hope the photos will be uncompressed but wouldn’t be surprised to find compression added anyway.

With the ‘in development’ warning in mind, we think this is one of those actually useful features WhatsApp releases occasionally and one that users would happily welcome. Unless mobile data is a concern of yours. In that case, a different setting could help.

Read More: New year, new WhatsApp update – The ability to set voice notes as your status is in beta

If you don’t happen to be included in the beta, that different setting exists. It’s just not as good as what’s coming. With WhatsApp open, tap the kebab menu (the three vertical dots) in the top right and select Settings>Storage and Data>Photo upload quality. Here you’re able to choose between ‘best quality’ and ‘data saver’ options or leave it on auto.

Your choice here applies to all pictures you upload across the app. If WhatsApp is using too much of your precious data – and your recipients don’t mind a slightly lower-resolution image – select ‘data saver’. If your elderly relative’s eyes “aren’t what they used to be”, the ‘best quality’ option dials back the compression WhatsApp uses for more clarity, detail, and a larger file. This is your best option until the proposed new feature makes its way to everyone else.

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