Whatsapp announced on Wednesday that it will introduce some improvements to voice messages in the coming weeks, including the ability to listen to a message while reading other chats, and play messages at 1.5x or 2x speed (yes, please, set this feature everywhere, everywhere, everywhere).
The experience of recording messages also improves. WhatsApp now lets you pause and resume your recording, so you don’t have to leave long silences when you’re trying to figure out what to say next, or repeat a recording when you need to have a quick real-life conversation. You can also listen to a message before sending it to make sure it hasn’t been accidentally cut off or contains anything you don’t want.
There is also a slight aesthetic improvement. Instead of just using a line to show the progress of playing your voice message, WhatsApp now uses a waveform of the actual message. Also, WhatsApp can remember where you were when you paused playback, and you can restart playback from that point, so you don’t have to listen to an entire message again.
These improvements are likely to see a lot of use – WhatsApp says users send an average of 7 billion voice chats a day. While some similar features were already available in other apps (Telegram, for example, allowed you to listen to messages outside of chats for a while), it’s definitely nice to see WhatsApp’s version getting some attention.