View Once, the new feature by WhatsApp enables sharing of photos and videos of temporary nature that users can share and view once, without the media taking up space in the phone’s storage.
Photos and videos sent through View Once on WhatsApp will not be saved in the device’s storage, and once sent and opened, the sender nor the recipient would be able to view it again.
View Once media will be marked with a ‘one-time’ icon and will appear as ‘opened’ once the media has been viewed. The feature is rolling out to all users, starting this week. Users cannot forward, save, star, or share media sent through this feature. The sender can only see if the media has been opened if the recipient has read receipts turned on.
The media expires from the chat if it has not been opened within 14 days. Photos and videos sent through VView Once can only be restored by backup if it has not been opened. View Once media is end-to-end encrypted, and encrypted media may be stored for a few weeks on WhatsApp’s servers after a user sent it.
WhatsApp has been recently exploring ephemeral communication, in November 2020, the platform had launched disappearing messages, when turned on, new messages sent to a chat disappear after 7 days.
This feature and the newly launched one enable conversations that would only hold importance in real-time, such as getting a quick reaction, sharing a current happening, or sharing something that would not need to be permanently saved on the phone.