WhatsApp introduced disappearing messages back in 2020, and over time, enabled users to choose the durations after which the messages would disappear. But what if users need to keep or save certain disappearing messages? There was no provision for that, until now.

Friday saw the Meta-owned WhatsApp introduce “Keep in Chat,” a feature that will allow users to save messages sent in a disappearing message thread simply just by long-pressing a text. With this, users will be able to bookmark and save messages that they want to keep in the chat, even after the other messages disappear after the set timer.

“With Disappearing Messages, conversations do not have to stick around forever – just like in-person discussions. While this extra layer of privacy protects messages from falling into the wrong hands, sometimes there’s that occasional voice note or key piece of information you want to keep,” WhatsApp wrote in a blog post, describing it as a “sender superpower.”

This new addition to WhatsApp is expected to be welcomed by users who want to retain important or meaningful conversations for future reference. Whether it’s a memorable conversation with a loved one, important information shared in a group chat, or a conversation with a colleague about a work-related task, the “Keep in Chat” feature allows users to preserve these messages. Furthermore, it provides users with more flexibility and control over their conversations on WhatsApp without the fear of losing them due to the disappearing messages feature.

Furthermore, this update from WhatsApp also highlights the platform’s commitment to constantly improving and enhancing the user experience. By listening to user feedback and incorporating new features, WhatsApp continues to evolve as a leading messaging platform that caters to the diverse needs of its user base. However, it is important to note that while the “Keep in Chat” feature allows users to save disappearing messages, it does not override the overall privacy settings of WhatsApp. Messages saved using this feature will still be subject to the platform’s end-to-end encryption, ensuring that they remain secure and protected from unauthorized access.

Mark Zuckerberg announced the development in a post on Facebook as well. However, there is a catch. Disappearing messages contain content that the sender intends to be removed after a certain period of time. And for Keep in Chat to be successful, the sender of the message will be notified when someone keeps a message. They will then have the final decision on how the messages they sent will be protected – they can either consent to have their disappearing message kept by the receiver(s), or they can reject it, and their decision is final.

The messages saved by the receiver on the platform will be noted with a bookmark icon, and they will be organized by chat and placed in the new Kept Messages folder. We hope people enjoy this new update and the flexibility to keep the messages they need,” WhatsApp noted. The feature will roll out to users across the globe over the next few weeks, so keep an eye out.