Push-to-talk voice messaging arrives on WhatsApp. Press and hold the microphone button to record your message. Lift your finger to send the message, or slide to cancel.
The new feature is being rolled out to all users on all platforms within the next 24 hours, according to AllThingsD, which was first to report the news.
WhatsApp has now removed length limits for recorded messages and plays audio within the app instead of opening a media player. Playback will automatically switch from a handset’s speakers to its earpiece when the device is held to your ear, and the mic icon will turn blue when recipients have listened to spoken missives.
WhatsApp makes a cross-platform messaging service that works across iPhone, Android, BlackBerry, Windows Phone, and Symbian devices, and has gained popularity among younger users as a cheap alternative to classic text messages. In mid June, the company said it handled 27 billion messages in a record one-day period. Now WhatsApp says it processes 11 billion sent messages and 20 billion received messages, or 31 billion total, on a daily basis. The app also sees 325 million photo uploads each day.
“Today, we’re proud to announce that WhatsApp has surpassed 300 million monthly active users worldwide, a milestone on the road to WhatsApp becoming the communication network of the 21st century,” a company spokesperson.