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WhatsApp starts rolling out emoji reactions in Android beta

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A simpler way to respond to messages

The feature offers a choice of six emoji.
Image: WABetaInfo

WhatsApp, the Meta-owned encrypted messaging service that boasts over two billion users worldwide, is adding emoji reactions in beta on Android. WABetaInfo, a reliable source of upcoming WhatsApp features, reports that emoji reactions have started appearing in beta version 2.22.8.3 of the service’s Android app, giving users a quick and easy way to respond to incoming messages.

With a long-press of a received message, the feature lets users react with one of six emoji: thumbs up, heart, crying, laugher, shocked face, or folded hands (usually taken to mean “thank you”). WhatsApp appears to be rolling out the feature on Android in phases, and we were unable to get it to appear ourselves.

The emoji reaction feature in action.
Image: WABetaInfo

Alongside its appearance on Android, there are signs that emoji reactions are also on the way for the service’s iOS and desktop applications. As of early January WhatsApp’s beta app on iOS has had a settings toggle to control “Reaction Notifications,” and a similar setting appeared in the beta version of the desktop app earlier this month.

Emoji reactions have become commonplace across other messaging services like iMessage, Facebook Messenger, Google’s Messages app, and even Twitter DMs. Now, finally, one of the world’s most popular messaging apps is getting in on the action.