WhatsApp has released a new update to its beta program on Android that allows users to send high resolution photos. Currently, Facebook’s own messaging platform is compressing high quality images to reduce transmission times and save data. The new option allows users to choose the quality of the images they send in chats.

According to WABetaInfo, a portal that tracks updates for WhatsApp across platforms, the “Photo Upload Quality” option offers three options – Auto, Best Quality and Data Saving Mode. The options window warns that images sent under ‘Best Quality’ are larger and may take longer to send.

WhatsApp users can select “Best Quality” option to send HD photos. It is noteworthy that the messaging app still compresses photos, but not as much. The new image compression algorithm from Whatsapp compresses images by keeping 80 percent of their original quality and only resizing them when the resolution is greater than 2048 x 2048, WABetaInfo reported.

The older configuration only retained 70 percent of the original quality and large images were always resized.

Given that this feature is in beta, WhatsApp could tweak the image compression parameters in future updates and possibly increase the percentage of original quality that is retained.

The feature has only appeared on Android so far, and there is no word when it will be rolled out iOS User.

WhatsApp was introduced in an earlier update for Android beta users Encrypted end-to-end Fuses. This should enable encryption of the chat history and the media to protect them from unauthorized access.

However, the function had to be temporarily shut down due to a connection problem. It could appear in future WhatsApp updates

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