“WhatsApp is aiming to simplify the sharing of media without compression, addressing a longstanding issue with the platform. While being the dominant instant messaging service globally, WhatsApp’s practice of aggressively compressing all shared media has been a drawback.
Although recent updates have introduced support for sharing higher-quality images and videos, these enhancements still fall short of fully leveraging the capabilities of top-tier smartphone cameras.
However, there is positive news on the horizon. Meta, the parent company of WhatsApp, is reportedly working on a solution that will allow users to share images and videos on the platform in their original, uncompressed resolutions. This development is particularly significant as the current compression algorithms often diminish the visual quality of media, nullifying the advantages of high-resolution smartphone cameras. Even with the HD video sharing option, 4K videos are reduced to 720p, resulting in noticeable blurriness on various screen sizes.
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A recent screenshot shared by WABetaInfo showcases progress towards this goal. The screenshot, taken from the Android app’s beta version 184.108.40.206, reveals a new ‘Choose from gallery’ option nested under the ‘Attach’ (paperclip icon) menu and categorized under ‘Documents.’ While one might have expected an ‘Uncompressed’ option within the HD image sharing feature, placing it within the document attachment menu seems justified.
Notably, WABetaInfo reports that these attached files will be shared as documents rather than conventional images. This method can currently be employed to evade compression, though it requires using the Android system file picker instead of WhatsApp’s built-in image attachment interface. The forthcoming official support for sharing media in full resolution holds the promise of a smoother user experience, potentially directing users to WhatsApp’s native gallery-style image/video picker.
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As of now, the capability to share uncompressed media is still under development and remains inaccessible to beta testers. Consequently, a definitive release date remains uncertain. Nevertheless, the proactive approach taken by Meta’s developers in response to user feedback and their efforts to implement these much-needed features is encouraging. Until the update is rolled out, users can opt to attach media files as documents to prevent compression, benefiting from WhatsApp’s newly expanded file size support of up to 2GB. The only drawback is the slightly cumbersome nature of the Android file picker user interface that needs to be utilized.”