WhatsApp, the messaging service that Facebook bought in 2014 is announcing the launch of document sharing on its platform. At the launch though, this will only be restricted to PDFs and is coming only to the iOS and Android version.
The IM app crossed the one billion monthly active user milestone and recently announced that it is dropping the service’s annual subscription fee. Several users have seen the feature pop up alongside other sharing options, like photo or video sharing, contact sharing, or location sharing.
As for how it works, it is fairly simply. On Android, you can simply tap to the attachment button you see while sending photos, videos and audio files. You will see a new, ‘Document’ icon appearing there. Click on that and you are in business — only PDFs are supported at launch though.
For a start, users who reported this feature were able to share documents via multiple third-party sources like Dropbox, Google Drive, OneDrive among others. The feature will work only if both sender and receiver have the latest Whatsapp update installed. If the receiver hasn’t got the update, files on’t send, with sender’s Whatsapp popping up a note reading that the contact has to “update WhatsApp to receive documents.”
As for supporting other file types, we are pretty much certain that most document types will be supported soon. That is because of two main reasons — you won’t provide a dedicated space in the attachments part just to share one kind of file, and the other being Whatsapp’s increased focus to get more business customers to use its service.