WhatsApp will allow users who have the beta version of WhatsApp for iOS and Android to make video calls and voice calls of up to eight people. The service has been one of the most used to keep in touch during the coronavirus crisis (COVID-19).
The expansion of participants began testing at the beginning of the month, but it is until today, April 21, that WaBetaInfo confirmed that the update is available for iOS and Android users who have the latest WhatsApp beta update. However, for this communication to work, all update participants must have this update.
Currently, WhatsApp and Instagram video calls have the most limited number of simultaneous users, allowing only four. In comparison, FaceTime allows up to 32 people at the same time and Hangouts up to 10 people in its free version and 25 in the business version. Snapchat accepts up to 15 people, Facebook Messenger 50 people (although only six of them can relay) and Duo allows video calls of up to 12 participants.
The coronavirus crisis has forced governments in many countries to implement drastic measures to prevent the spread of the virus. Among these measures is the mandatory quarantine for many citizens, which prevents physical contact and has urged people to communicate with loved ones through video calls.
As of Friday, April 21, the coronavirus has infected nearly 2.5 million people and caused more than 174,000 deaths worldwide. On March 11, the World Health Organization officially classified COVID-19 as a pandemic.