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A weird new WhatsApp feature might stop you from taking screenshots

It looks like WhatsApp is weighing up a very odd sounding new security feature that would prevent you from taking screenshots of your own conversations.

The feature was discovered in the latest Android beta (v2.19.106) by WABetaInfo – a site dedicated to exploring experimental and upcoming WhatsApp features before they’re announced.

Read more: Best smartphone

According to WABetaInfo, a new security feature for WhatsApp for Android is currently in the works. When it’s enabled (assuming it rolls out at all), you’ll only be able to access your WhatsApp conversations after you scan your fingerprint with your phone. Sounds sensible so far.

A picture of a scene from a game called Dreams

Image Credit@ WABetaInfo

But this is where things get confusing. As the screenshot above shows, the feature would also prevent you from taking screenshots of your conversations… and we’re not really sure why anyone would find this functionality useful.

I guess it might come in handy if someone who really wanted to screengrab one of your message threads forced you to unlock access to your WhatsApp messages… and wasn’t aware that they could then disable the feature. Maybe.

The people behind WABetaInfo, it appears, are just as baffled as we are:

Back in February, WhatsApp added Touch ID and Face ID authentication to the iOS version of the app. If you enable the extra layer of security, you won’t be able to access your conversations without scanning your face (Face ID: iPhone X, iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR) or fingerprint (everything else, dating back to the iPhone 5S).

Related: Best iPhone

Better still, the feature is pleasingly flexible, as it lets you select the amount of time before Touch ID or Face ID is required after you close WhatsApp again.

The feature discovered by WABetaInfo sounds a lot like this, but with a confusing twist.

What new features would you like to add to WhatsApp? Let us know on Twitter @TrustedReviews.

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