whatsapp limited feature

WhatsApp on Friday revealed that no accounts would be deleted or lose functionality of WhatsApp on May 15th because of its new privacy policy update.

However, the Facebook-owned messaging service will continue to remind its users to accept new terms or else have limited functionality of the app.

For those unaware, back in January, WhatsApp had updated its Privacy Policy wherein it said that the service would be sharing user data with other Facebook companies starting February 8th.

Users were asked to agree to these terms by February 8th, if they wished to continue using the app.

However, WhatsApp garnered sharp criticism over the change in its privacy policy, which forced the company to not apply the new data-sharing policy until May 15th.

Back then, WhatsApp said that it wanted to give people time to review the policy at their own pace before new business options are available.

“If you haven’t accepted by [May 15], WhatsApp will not delete your account. However, you won’t have full functionality of WhatsApp until you accept,” the company had previously said. “For a short time, you’ll be able to receive calls and notifications, but won’t be able to read or send messages from the app.”

With the May 15th deadline approaching closer, WhatsApp has decided to scrap this deadline for users to accept its controversial new privacy policy without specifying any new date.

The messaging service said that it won’t disable the features for users who don’t accept the changes but will continue to send “persistent reminder” to users to review and accept the update in exchange for a “limited functionality.”

“You won’t be able to access your chat list, but you can still answer incoming phone and video calls,” WhatsApp said in a new post in its Help Center. “If you have notifications enabled, you can tap on them to read or respond to a message or call back a missed phone or video call.”

After a few weeks of limited functionality, users who fail to accept the new privacy policy won’t be able to receive incoming calls or notifications and WhatsApp will stop sending messages and calls to their phone.

Although the company won’t delete a user’s account for not complying with the new privacy policy, the account may still be deleted if it’s inactive for 120 days.

“We’ve spent the last several months providing more information about our update to users around the world,” a WhatsApp spokesperson said in a statement. “In that time, the majority of people who have received it have accepted the update and WhatsApp continues to grow. However, for those that have not yet had a chance to do so, their accounts will not be deleted or lose functionality on May 15. We’ll continue to provide reminders to those users within WhatsApp in the weeks to come.”

WhatsApp has always maintained that none of its privacy-focused features are changing. The recent terms and privacy policy updates do not affect personal messages, as they are protected by end-to-end encryption, and WhatsApp and Facebook cannot read or listen to them.

Instead, the new update includes new options people will have to message a business on WhatsApp and provide further transparency about how the company collects and uses data.