Whatsapp blue checkmark read indicator disappoints users

Whatsapp users are unhappy with new blue check marks that indicate whether someone has read the message. The rating of the app rapidly decreases on both the Android Play Store and the iOS App Store. Wednesday night app Whatsapp released a new version which unexpectedly  contained a feature allowing users to see whether someone has read a message.

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In the changelog of the most recent version Whatsapp only states the version contains bug fixes and improvements.  Many users are unhappy with the change. The latest version of Whatsapp for iOS receives a mere 2.5 stars out of more than 800 reviews, while previous versions received 4 stars or more.

On Android it’s not possible to see ratings for the last version only, but recent reviews are more negative than before. “I don’t want people to know when I read messages otherwise I’d use Facebook messenger”, one user wrote. The alleged “privacy violation” of the read indicator is where most users complain about.

Many users seem indignant because when they read a message and don’t respond straight away, it is always visible to the sender. Whatsapp doesn’t collect more data than before but only passes on more information to the user.

Previously the app only used two kinds of checkmarks. One grey checkmark meant the message was received on the server, two checkmarks showed the message was received by the user. Now two blue check marks also indicate whether the recipient has opened the message.

Whatsapp previously showed when an user was last online, but that feature could be disabled which meant contacts could never see whether a message was read or not. Whatsapp hasn’t responded to the uproar yet. Earlier this year the company was also under fire when it was acquired by Facebook. Many people then outed their concern about their privacy. Nevertheless,Whatsapp  continues to grow faster than ever.