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WhatsApp 'Delete for All' feature goes live: Here's how you can use it

Starting today, iOS, Android and Windows phone users can recall the wrongly sent messages

Surbhi Gloria Singh  |  New Delhi 

whatsapp, facebook
Photo: Reuters

Are you guilty of ever sending a text message to a person it wasn't meant for? These mistakes are followed by embarrassment and waste of the receiver's time. The moment you hit enter, you are met with this sinking feeling of doom, knowing that you can't revoke the message. WhatsApp, however, has now come up with a feature that may come to your rescue. Starting today, iOS, Android and Windows phone users can recall the wrongly sent messages or messages that are mistakenly sent to the other chats, through WhatsApp's newly developed feature. According to wabetainfo.com, the messaging application owned by social media giant Facebook had been working on this feature since 2016.


The Delete for Everyone feature works for any message type in WhatsApp: text messages, images, videos, GIFs, voice messages, stickers (in future), contact cards, files, locations and status replies.

WhatsApp's Delete for Everyone feature doesn't work for in every circumstance:

— Message contained in a quoted message cannot be revoked

— Users can delete messages sent in a Broadcast List

— Messages can be recalled only within 5 minutes of time frame

— The feature works only if both sender and receiver are using the updated version of WhatsApp

— The feature does not work in Symbian OS-based devices

Learn to use this feature

Step 1

Select the messages you want to delete.

will ask for a confirmation - Delete for Everyone, Delete for me and Cancel.

Step 2

After you select "Delete for All" option, will reflect a warning - "Messages you selected will be deleted for everyone on the latest version of in this chat. It's give you the option to tap on OK and learn more".

Step 3

Once you've selected "OK" in Step 2, your chat will display "You deleted this message for everyone".

How does feature work?

When you delete a message for everyone, sends a fake copy of the message to the recipient. The recipient gets the fake copy. However, his/her device won’t show the notification and it won’t save it in chat history.

If the receiver's device gets the message, it will be revoked.

The recalled message will be also deleted in the notifications center (on iOS) of the recipient at the exact moment you have revoked it (if the Internet connection is available for the user). On Android, the message will be updated with the “This message was deleted for everyone” text.

Haven't received the yet?

If you didn’t receive the activation yet, you may try to reinstall WhatsApp

In case you would like to reinstall WhatsApp:

— Open your Settings > Chats > Backup and perform it.

— Delete WhatsApp

— Reconfigure your WhatsApp, inserting your phone number again, the SMS code and the Two-Step Verification PIN (if you have previously enabled it), restore your chat history and verify.

First Published: Wed, November 01 2017. 12:20 IST
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