WhatsApp is getting an upgrade that will allow users to share HD photos through the messaging app, according to an announcement shared by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg on his Instagram broadcast channel and via a Facebook post. The feature, which allows users to preserve the high-def resolution of the photos they share with friends and family was previously in beta testing with select users.
Earlier this summer, users spotted the option became available through the Android beta version of WhatsApp and the TestFlight app on iOS, suggesting a public launch was nearing.
To access the new feature, you’ll need to first update your app to the latest release. After doing so, you’ll notice a new “HD” button at the top of the photo-sharing screen next to the other image editing tools like rotate and those for adding text and stickers to the photo.
When you tap on the HD button, a new pop-up will appear that allows you to select the photo quality. By default, Standard Quality is selected. WhatsApp says this choice was made to ensure that sharing photos remains fast and reliable. But now, you can opt to check HD quality instead to preserve the photo’s high-def version.
After sending the photo, the recipient will see the photo which now has an HD label appear in the bottom left corner, alerting them that you’ve shared a higher-quality image. All photos are protected via WhatsApp’s end-to-end encryption.
Notes the company, if you receive a photo when you have low bandwidth connectivity, you can choose on a photo-by-photo basis whether to keep the standard version or upgrade it to HD.
The HD photos feature is rolling out to global users over the next few weeks, followed by support for HD videos, the company says.