WhatsApp rolls out voice-calling to select Android users for few hours

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WhatsApp calling feature is one eagerly awaited functionality. According to a report in Android Police, the calling feature was activated for some selected users who could pass on the invitation to their friends by making a WhatsApp call. But this invite-feature has since been disabled by WhatsApp.

According to the site, users with WhatsApp version 2.11.528 from the Play Store or 2.11.531 from WhatsApp website who saw the caller icon on their app, could make a call to their friends and pass on the invite. The invite in essence was getting a call from someone who already had the calling feature activated.

Users who have activated this feature, can still make calls to their friends. But one cannot activate the option for others. It seems like WhatsApp has disabled the invitation feature and was simply testing its servers for the call functionality.

We had earlier seen, how WhatsApp was testing this calling feature in India. A Reddit user pradnesh07, even got the feature activated on his phone. According to the images posted, users who receive the voice-calling feature will notice an icon for it, beside the Chats and Contacts tabs. The call interface seems to quite similar to a smartphone’s contact directory. The app keeps a record of recent WhatsApp calls as well.

News site BGR India also claimed to have received a call in the testing phase from WhatsApp India head Neeraj Arora. According to the site, the call quality on 3G and EDGE networks was quite good with 3G networks giving better audio quality.

There are a lot of messenger apps which allow free peer-to-peer calling. Some of them include Viber, Hike, Skype, Line and so on. But what gives WhatsApp an edge is the user base in India, which comes to around 70 million active monthly users. It seems that the feature is all set for a pan-India rollout sooner rather than later.

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