This same week WaBetaInfo announced that WhatsApp was going to increase the limit of participants in the calls and video calls, which is currently four people. There were hints in the beta that the feature was close to being rolled out, and indeed it has. As reported by the blog specialized in WhatsApp, in beta versions 22.214.171.124 of WhatsApp for iOS (accessible from TestFlight) and 2.20.133 of WhatsApp for Android this feature is now available.
The new limit is eight people, that is, twice the current limit. For those of you who are beta users, saying that testing this new feature will be slightly tricky, while all participants in the video call are required to use the latest beta version. In addition, both betas have been full for a long time, so no more users are supported, although those who use Android can try installing the APK of the latest beta.
More people on calls
According to WaBetaInfo, throughout the last betas WhatsApp has been testing a new interface for the new limit. This is clear in the changelog for the beta version for iOS, which states that one of the functions to test is “make calls”, probably to test the app when up to eight people join the same call or video call.
In the hypothetical case that users have up to seven contacts using the latest beta for Android or iOS, group video calls can be started in two ways:
- Within group chats, by pressing the call icon and selecting those beta users.
- From the calls tab, clicking on “New group call” and selecting the beta users.
On the other hand, WaBetaInfo states that it is possible that, despite having the latest beta, the function is not available. If so, from the blog they recommend making a backup of the chats and reinstalling the beta, since that way WhatsApp downloads the newest configurations from the server, “thus activating the function,” explains WaBetaInfo. If this doesn’t work, we will have to wait for WhatsApp to deploy the function to all users.
Finally, it should be noted that WhatsApp video calls are end-to-end encrypted, so no one, not even WhatsApp itself, is able to “see” our conversations. As we said, the new limit is eight people, two more people than on Instagram and the same as HouseParty, although a figure significantly lower than other alternatives such as Facebook Messenger (50 people), Zoom (up to 100 people), Skype (50 people ) or Hangouts (10 people).