WhatsApp today introduced screen sharing as its latest feature to enhance the video calling experience on its platform — taking on traditional video conferencing apps including Microsoft Meet, Google Meet, and Zoom as well as Apple’s FaceTime.
The new feature, announced this morning by Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg through a Facebook post and on his Instagram channel, will allow you to share your documents, photos, and even your shopping cart with contacts available on video calls.
First released for some beta testers on Android in late May, screen sharing on WhatsApp can be accessed by tapping or clicking the ‘Share’ icon. Users can choose between sharing a specific app or their entire screen. This is similar to how screen sharing works on typical video conferencing platforms like Google Meet and Zoom.
WhatsApp told TechCrunch that the screen sharing feature has started rolling out on Android, iOS, and Windows Desktop in a phased manner. That means you may not see the feature immediately, but should soon.
Alongside screen sharing, WhatsApp launched video calling support in Landscape mode to offer a wider and more immersive viewing experience over the existing Portrait mode. Support for the Landscape mode may also be useful when using screen sharing on the platform.
Video calling has been a part of WhatsApp for over six years, as it debuted for all users on the platform in November 2016. However, the instant messaging app is gradually improving the service to stay relevant in the competition. Just recently, WhatsApp brought picture-in-picture support for video calls to iOS. It also enabled the option to share short video messages in chats, as video, in general, has been a crucial source of communication for many users.
Screen sharing has been a crucial feature of video conferencing apps for a while now, including those aimed at consumers. In 2021, for example, Apple enhanced its FaceTime service with SharePlay, which enabled iOS users to share their screens natively. WhatsApp has gone even further by extending this feature to users on Android, iOS, and desktop.