In October of 2016, I joined the team of WhatsApp, a messaging service used by over a billion people everyday around the world. For a long time I had admired the principles in which WhatsApp designs and builds its product.
WhatsApp is focused on creating a simple, native, and reliable messaging app which is also secured with end-to-end encryption. Here are some of the projects I’ve worked on:
WhatsApp originally got its start as an app where you could share a status message for your contacts to see. The new version of Status which was meant to complement the original feature allows sharing of rich photo, video and GIF updates.
We built a simple and robust privacy model so you can control who sees your updates as well as the updates you see. The updates last for 24 hours and are fully encrypted end-to-end just like all your conversations on WhatsApp.
We focused on performance and reliability, allowing these updates to work on networks in all conditions. Status now has over 450 million daily users. Learn more.
Photo filters allow you to add effect to your photos. I designed the user interface as well as the 5 photo filters: Pop, B&W, Cool, Chrome, and Film. This was an exciting project because I was able to use my photo retouching skills at a whole new level. I had always dreamed of creating a filter set and I finally got the chance!
Our goal was to create an easier way to view the contact’s profile photo and access information and settings from the chat. We introduced new iconography to the view to help make sense of the large amount of information presented.
Photo albums allow you to send a large set of photos without disrupting a conversation. We automatically condense many photos sent from a single participant into an album. When you tap the album you are taken to a special view where you can see all the photos full width by scrolling.
On iOS and Android, you can swipe a message to the right to reply to it quickly. This is a simple interaction which allows you to have conversations more fluidly. It is also faster than using the contextual message menu to start a reply.
Text Status is a new feature that makes it easy to share creative text-based status updates. The updates are extremely fast to create, send and receive. You can change the background color and font of any Text Status as well as add emoji characters.
When you return to a group that has a lot of new messages, you can now instantly scroll to your mentions and replies.
One way people use groups is to receive important announcements and information, including parents and teachers at schools, community centers, and non-profit organizations. Announcement groups is a setting so admins can have better tools for these use cases.
Message Action Menu
On iOS the message action menu was redesigned to support more options, larger touch areas, display of icons to help parsing and longer string for language translations.
Groups were given the option to create a description where they could outline the purpose of the group, rules, or social normals. This description is show to the participants of the group as well as when people are joining the group from an invite link.
The ability to search the contents of a specific chat was given its own UI within the chat.
Forwarded Message Indicator
This indicator shows you which messages you receive have been forwarded to you. This helps make one-on-one and group chats easier to follow. It also helps you determine if your friend or relative wrote the message they sent or if it originally came from someone else.