How to Enable/Disable WhatsApp disappearing messages [New Feature]

WhatsApp’s disappearing messages feature means new messages sent within an individual chat will automatically disappear after seven days when turned on.

Disappearing messages is a feature available on some other services, like Telegram & Signal, but this is how the feature works on WhatsApp, what to watch out for and how to enable the feature. 

Before you proceed, make sure that you’ve the latest version of WhatsApp installed on your smartphone. For Android users, that would be version 2.21.206.15 and for iPhone users, that would be version 2.21.121.4.

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Once this is sorted, go ahead and follow these steps to enable disappearing messages in WhatsApp.

Enable disappearing messages

Either user can enable disappearing messages in an individual chat. Once enabled, messages in the chat will disappear after seven days.

  1. Open the WhatsApp chat.
  2. Tap the contact’s name.
  3. Tap Disappearing messages.
    • If prompted, tap CONTINUE.
  4. Select On.

Disable disappearing messages

Either user can disable disappearing messages at any time. Once disabled, messages sent in the chat will no longer disappear.

  1. Open the WhatsApp chat.
  2. Tap the contact’s name.
  3. Tap Disappearing messages.
    • If prompted, tap CONTINUE.
  4. Select Off.

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By default, the media you receive in WhatsApp will be automatically downloaded to your photos. If disappearing messages are turned on, media sent in the chat will disappear but will be saved on the phone if auto-download is on. You can turn auto-download off in WhatsApp Settings.

What Things You Need to Take Care

  • Previews
  • Replies
  • Screenshots
  • Backups

Messages could still appear as a preview in notifications if a user hasn’t opened WhatsApp for seven days. The preview would disappear when WhatsApp is opened however.

If you reply to a disappearing message, the initial message could still appear in the chat after the seven day period.

If the disappearing messages is forwarded to a chat that doesn’t have disappearing messages enabled, the message won’t disappear in that chat and will still be visible.

If a backup is created before the disappearing message disappears, the message will be included in the backup but disappearing messages will be deleted when you restore from a backup.

It’s also worth noting that screenshots and photos can still be taken of a disappearing message before it goes and users can also copy and save content from a disappearing message before it disappears. 

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Rahul Setia was born and raised in the Kaithal, Haryana. He worked at brands like Jabong, ProProfs etc. He was also in the List of Top 100 Social Media Influencer's 2019 by Status Brew. He lives in Delhi/NCR and is a Digital Gig & Founder of Websites i.e TechBlogCorner.com, ViralMasalla.com, DealorCoupons.com. Follow me on: LinkedIn, @rahulsetia007 and Facebook.

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