33 secret WhatsApp tricks you (probably) didn't know about

24) Reply directly from a popup

On Android, replying to a message involves swiping down the notification bar, selecting the relevant missive and tapping out your reply. But there is a faster way. 

How: Go to Settings, Notifications, then Popup Notification, and choose from four different options. You can change this setting for both individual messages and group messages respectively. Unfortunately, this feature isn't yet available in iOS.

25) Send an attachment

Unlike EPMD’s hip-hop classic, WhatsApp’s ethos is by no means Strictly Business. If you do need to quickly send a document to a colleague, and email isn’t an option, it’s easily done. Just select the file you want from Google Drive, Dropbox or iCloud and WhatsApp will fling it onwards as a PDF.

How: Tap the + symbol (on Android you get a paperclip) > Document > select your cloud storage service of choice and then the file itself. Bosh!

26) Add emphasis

To give your words a dash of typographical emphasis, Whatsapp has recently added in the option to customise your text with bold, italic and strikethrough effects. There is also a hidden ability to type in the one of the oldest fonts going, called FixedSys, which was first used in Windows 1.0, released in 1985.

How: To do this, you'll need to place choice symbols at either side of the word or phrase you want it to affect. For bold, use *asterisks*; for italics, use _underscores_; and for strikethrough, use ~tildes~. The secret font is accessed by using three ```grave``` accents either side of the word or phrase you want to change - Android users will find this more easily than iPhone users, who will find it hidden under a long press of the apostrophe key.

27) Delete individual messages

If you've ever sent a message to the wrong person by mistake, you might not realise that you've got a short amount of time in which you can put things right. Act within seven minutes, and you can delete the message from both you and your contact's message log, saving any embarrassment/drama/hilarity (delete as appropriate) before it happens. 

How: As long as your message falls in the all-important seven minute bracket, just long hold it and select Delete. Be sure to select Delete for Everyone for it to disappear into the WhatsApp ether for good. There will be a message to let your contact know that you deleted a message, but you can come up with a decent enough excuse for that - just be sure to act before those blue ticks appear.

28) Say it with GIFs

When words fail you, sometimes only a GIF will do. Thankfully, WhatsApp has a whole stash of them built in, courtesy of the Tenor GIF keyboard, which you can search through and send for your comedic pleasure.

How: On iOS, click the + icon and choose Photo & Video Library. This will bring up your camera roll, but in the bottom left hand corner, you'll see and option for GIF. Click that and you can start browsing.

On Android, the option is similarly tucked away, and is included alongside the emoji keyboard. Click the emoji icon to launch the list of emojis you can use, and underneath the stream of yellow faces, you'll see an option to switch to GIF. 

29) Take a conversation private

When the group chats get too much, and you want to go one-on-one with your pal instead, WhatsApp makes it easy for you to carry on the conversation in private without having to exit the group chat.

How: Long hold on a message from the mate you want to message privately and select the option 'Message xxxx'. This will open up your previous chat, or load a new one if you haven't chatted privately before.

30) Set your chat wallpaper

This is one of those things that only you will see, but considering most of us stare at our WhatsApp screen more than we care to admit, making sure it looks nice isn't something to be sniffed at. You can change your chat wallpaper to a choice of WhatsApp's own patterned or coloured options, or alternatively pick one of your own pictures. 

How: On iOS, head to Settings > Chats > Chat Wallpaper, and simply choose what you'd like to appear as your background. On Android, click the three dots > Settings > Chats and Calls > Default Background for the same. With the latter though, you are also able to change your background for individual chats, which you'll find in the three dots menu within individual chats.

31) Get Siri to read your messages

This is one for iOS-flavoured voice assistants only at the moment, but if your hands are full and you can't read the latest message to ping into your notifications, you can ask Siri to do it instead. There's a bit of admin to go through the first time you ask for her help, but once you've done it, you won't be asked again.

How: Say "Hey Siri, read my last Whatsapp message" to kick things off - your phone will need to be unlocked and you'll have to grant Apple permission to read your WhatsApp data first. Siri will then read out the last message you received, giving you an option to reply via voice at the end. Smart stuff.

32) Search your messages

One thing that group chats are particularly great at is burrowing that one bit of information you really need to find, when you really need to find it. The search function can prove the perfect ally at times like this, and you can choose to go through your whole chat history, or pinpoint it down to one conversation.

How: At the top of your list of Whatsapp chats you'll see a search bar, which you can fill with the text you're looking for. This will then bring up all the chats with that word, or part of that word (search for cat, and expect to get catch, category etc), so the more specific the word the better. If you can focus it down to one chat (group or individual), that'll reduce your results significantly. On iOS click their name >Chat Search, and on Android, select the three dots > Search.

33) Control Group chat chaos

The dread. The horror. You've just been invited to a birthday party via WhatsApp, mingled in with 52 faceless other contacts that are also invited to 'Pete's birthday BBQ'.

The inane comments start to come through, whereby someone called Rosa is broadcasting that she's busy moving house that day and that someone else called Henry, who has a hamster in a bow tie as his profile picture, is now a vegetarian and detailing the three main reasons for his decision.

Then it comes to the actual event and you have to scroll up 743 messages to find the postcode. WhatsApp saves the day and now has a new group setting where only admins are able to send messages to a group. This is an excellent idea, provided Henry isn't the group admin. WhatsApp understand that people use groups to receive important announcements and information, including parents and teachers at schools, and other organisation - and that it's not just for BBQ based bants.

How: Open “Group Info,” tap Group Settings > Send Messages and select “Only Admins.”