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WhatsApp beta adds voice message transcriptions on Android

The latest WhatsApp beta is bringing voice message transcription – a feature previously limited to Google Messages on Pixel phones – to all Android devices.

According to WABetaInfo, the latest WhatsApp beta for Android v2.24.15.5 is adding voice message transcription to the popular cross-platform messaging service. This has been spotted in development previously, but it appears this is now ready for primetime and rolling out in several languages.

Although we have updated to the latest WhatsApp beta build, this option is not yet live on several of our test devices. This report claims that when you have updated to this beta build, WhatsApp will show a pop-up to confirm that transcripts are available for incoming voice messages.

whatsapp voice message transcriptions

You may receive a pop-up when launching the app after updating. To work in WhatsApp, you need to download a language pack or voice message transcription first. This feature only supports five languages right now: English, Spanish, Portuguese, Russian, and Hindi. Once you have done this, the audio is analyzed before a transcript is produced. All transcripts are generated on your phone, while voice messages are also encrypted to guarantee privacy.

This is eerily similar to how selected Google Pixel phones are able to get voice message transcriptions when using SMS, MMS or RCS messaging within Google Messages. In that instance, the audio is quickly analyzed before a text chat box appears beneath the audio waveform. This allows you still get context from a message even if you aren’t able to listen at that time.

As we have noted, even if you have updated to the latest WhatsApp beta build, you might not have the option right away. It appears to be rolling out to a small group of beta testers in selected regions at present. Hopefully, we can see a wider rollout, as this is a great extra accessibility feature. It also means you don’t have to suffer through podcast-length voice notes in the future.

It’s great to see WhatsApp at least testing a function like this, as many other cross-platform services do not offer the function even with lots of AI-integration and enhanced functions. Let’s hope it rolls out more widely soon.

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