Snapchat, which boasts a user base of 255 million users according to the latest estimates, will begin allowing users to delete unopened sent messages as of today, according to a report by 9to5Mac.
The new functionality will roll out to most of its users in the next few weeks.
To delete an unopened message, a Snapchat user can simply press and hold the media e.g. photo, sticker, audio, etc., they’d like to delete and a popover message will be displayed asking the user to confirm deletion.
When the user confirms deletion the recipient of the now deleted communication will receive a notification that something sent to them was deleted (however, providing they never opened the communication they’ll have no idea what it was).
Users will need to upgrade to the latest version of Snapchat to take advantage of the new feature. Moreover, it’s important to note deleting a message doesn’t stop a recipient from taking a screenshot.
Snapchat’s new delete message feature is similar to the feature released by instant messaging platform WhatsApp (1.5 billion users) last year.
In the case of WhatsApp, users can delete messages sent to groups or individuals. They can choose to either delete the message from their own account or delete it from the accounts of everyone it was sent to.
Upon deletion, a notification will be placed in the chat stating a message has been deleted. In order for the feature to work both participants in the chat must have the latest version of WhatsApp.
The delete message feature has been on the wish list of Snapchat users for some time. Its inclusion in the app follows the launch of a redesign that was widely rebuked by users.
On the topic of the redesign, Snapchat CEO Evan Spiegel told Recode’s Kara Swisher last month, “…in terms of the philosophy I’m excited about the progress we’re making, in terms of the execution we have to continue to evolve and iterate the product…”
In the interview Spiegel also criticized Facebook’s data protection practices.