The best means of receiving the latest update of WhatsApp is by heading straight to PlayStore and it will automatically work its way towards you.
Open PlayStore and press on the trio lines seen on top left of the screen. This opens the menu, where you must select My applications and Games, to see if it is listed on the screen top. You can also manually update your WhatsApp manually by downloading the version from the official WhatsApp download page or download the APK using the APK Mirror, where even the beta builds are always available. However, when trying to install an APK, you have to ensure that the toggle is on for Unknown sources in Security found under Settings.
Latest iOS Beta Release
The latest iOS beta release, version 18.104.22.168 is now available for some devices. It brings in several fixes and enhancements to bugs and also offers support for auto play of gif images. WhatsApp had been consistently resisting invasion of gif till now, so now it seems to be a welcome feature for users of WhatsApp.
Gif Imaging Support
It is still unclear whether all users of iOS will receive this feature and whether the update will also be offered on Androiddevices. Some specific changes have been listed under this new beta release for iOS devices. One of them is the auto play of gif images, when users share it as a link. Users can also save the gif images on their camera roll and even save them as simple images. A user can give a direct reply to such a gif image message. The update also allows users to share gif with encryptions support along with support for 3D touch, Peek & Pop, gif image actions.
WhatsApp Responds to Viber
This news about supporting gif images came soon after another similar service; Viber had brought it support for the same feature on their platform. Many other messaging platforms, such as Facebook Messenger, support gif images sharing.
Importance of gif Image Sharing
GIF images are a very important feature in messaging services. This feature is important irrespective of the platform, as it makes all conversations more interesting and effective. A gif image can be more impactful and impressive as well as entertaining in a conversation, when compared to standard images. The latest update has ensured that the feature is available at least for iOS users, for the present.
Video Calling Feature in the Offing
The company is soon going to add another interesting feature, namely video calling abilities to the application. Many beta releases point towards the same. The rumored feature has been seen in one beta application update. It was available for some time in Play Store and some users having the 2.16.80 version were able to view video calling feature in the application. However, they were not able to make any calls. It is suspected that the final presentation of this feature will make its way to the app shortly.
Previous Major Updates
The major update for WhatsApp came in last month in May 2016. With this update, it offered the option of document sharing through the Web application. Just prior to that, WhatsApp had offered the first PC app for OS X and for Windows.