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WhatsApp Blocks Profile Picture Screenshots on Android; Lets Beta Testers Pin Multiple Chats

Screenshots of profile photos on most Android phones is now blocked — except on Pixel phones where a black image is captured.

WhatsApp Blocks Profile Picture Screenshots on Android; Lets Beta Testers Pin Multiple Chats

Photo Credit: Unsplash/ Christian Wiediger

WhatsApp currently allows users to pin one message at the top of a chat

  • WhatsApp has blocked screenshots of profile photos on Android phones
  • Currently, iOS users can still capture images of a user's profile photo
  • WhatsApp is also testing the ability to pin three messages at the top

WhatsApp is now blocking users from taking screenshots of other users' profile pictures on smartphones, a new privacy feature that is widely available on Android handsets. Meta began testing the functionality on the beta version of the app over the past few weeks, and it is now being enabled for all users. Meanwhile, the company has started to allow beta testers to pin more than one message in a chat, allowing more information to be easily accessed in individual chats or group chats.

Meta is yet to announce details of the privacy functionality that blocks screenshots on a user's profile picture area. The rollout was spotted by Android Police, and users on the stable and beta versions of WhatsApp for Android are now blocked from capturing the screen when they are viewing another user's profile photo. Users can still capture screenshots on WhatsApp for iOS on the beta and stable versions.

Gadgets 360 was able to confirm that WhatsApp blocks profile image screenshots on a Samsung smartphone citing the device's security policy, while attempting to capture the screen while another user's photo is open on a Pixel 7a yields an all-black screen.

However, it is important to note that the feature that blocks screenshots on a user's profile picture does not guarantee that another user won't be able to save the image. The new functionality can't stop a user from clicking a photo of the screen where the image is displayed, using another smartphone. Similarly, tapping on a user's profile photo on the main chat list reveals a small thumbnail and WhatsApp does not block screenshots there.

Meanwhile, feature tracker WABetaInfo spotted a change on the latest beta version of the app for Android smartphones — the ability to pin multiple messages at the top of a chat. Users can currently pin a single message, but a future update is expected to expand this to allow three messages to be pinned simultaneously. Beta testers can already test out the improved feature by updating to WhatsApp beta for Android It is expected to roll out to all users on iOS and Android at a later date. 

Is the Samsung Galaxy Z Flip 5 the best foldable phone you can buy in India right now? We discuss the company's new clamshell-style foldable handset on the latest episode of Orbital, the Gadgets 360 podcast. Orbital is available on Spotify, Gaana, JioSaavn, Google Podcasts, Apple Podcasts, Amazon Music and wherever you get your podcasts.
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David Delima
As a writer on technology with Gadgets 360, David Delima is interested in open-source technology, cybersecurity, consumer privacy, and loves to read and write about how the Internet works. David can be contacted via email at DavidD@ndtv.com, on Twitter at @DxDavey, and Mastodon at mstdn.social/@delima. More
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