Want CNET to notify you of price drops and the latest stories?
CNET logo Why You Can Trust CNET

Our expert, award-winning staff selects the products we cover and rigorously researches and tests our top picks. If you buy through our links, we may get a commission. Reviews ethics statement

WhatsApp's Voice Messages Update Will Let You Listen While Texting Other People

WhatsApp's updates come as the service announces 7 billion voice messages are sent on average every day.

Mike Sorrentino Senior Editor
Mike Sorrentino is a Senior Editor for Mobile, covering phones, texting apps and smartwatches -- obsessing about how we can make the most of them. Mike also keeps an eye out on the movie and toy industry, and outside of work enjoys biking and pizza making.
Expertise Phones, texting apps, iOS, Android, smartwatches, fitness trackers, mobile accessories, gaming phones, budget phones, toys, Star Wars, Marvel, Power Rangers, DC, mobile accessibility, iMessage, WhatsApp, Signal, RCS
Mike Sorrentino
2 min read

WhatsApp is updating its voice message features while announcing that on average 7 billion voice messages are sent per day on its app.

Advertiser Disclosure
Advertiser Disclosure
This advertising widget is powered by Navi and contains advertisements that Navi may be paid for in different ways. You will not be charged for engaging with this advertisement. While we strive to provide a wide range of offers, this advertising widget does not include information about every product or service that may be available to you. We make reasonable efforts to ensure that information in the featured advertisements is up to date, each advertiser featured in this widget is responsible for the accuracy and availability of its offer details. It is possible that your actual offer terms from an advertiser may be different than the offer terms in this advertising widget and the advertised offers may be subject to additional terms and conditions of the advertiser which will be presented to you prior to making a purchase. All information is presented without any warranty or guarantee to you.

WhatsApp is updating voice messages for all those times when sending short audio recordings is more convenient -- or expressive -- than typing out your texts. The voice message feature is apparently quite popular, with WhatsApp announcing that 7 billion of these are sent on average per day.

The new voice features should make it more flexible to listen to messages and to reply back. Out-of-chat playback will let you hit play on a message and keep it playing while you multitask or text other people. 

A pause and resume recording feature will let you take breaks while recording, just in case there's an interruption, without having to stop and start over. A draft preview feature will also let you listen to your recording before you send it to someone -- which could prove invaluable to avoid mistakingly sending a message to the wrong person.

Other features, which appear to borrow from podcast apps, could help with listening to longer voice messages. Fast playback will let you listen at 1.5x and 2x speeds. Remember that playback will let you pick up from where you left off if you need to pause. A waveform visualization representing the voice message will also display as the message plays.

The voice messages update comes as WhatsApp plans to bring multidevice capability to public release, which is currently in beta. When rolled out widely, it will let people use WhatsApp's web version without needing to directly connect with a phone first. The update also comes after other services from WhatsApp's parent company Meta, such as Facebook and Instagram, were banned in Russia amid the ongoing invasion of Ukraine. The court's decision in that country has left WhatsApp as the only Meta service running in Russia.

Watch this: Why Signal is surging: Elon Musk