WhatsApp Adds Voice Message Transcription Feature to Android

WhatsApp Voice Message Transcripts Cover
In Short
  • The latest WhatsApp Android beta update brings the voice message transcripti0n feature to some users.
  • This new feature will transcribe voice messages so you can read the text instead of listening to them.
  • It's currently unclear when the feature will be available to all Android users.

In our June WhatsApp features list, we mentioned that the messaging app was working on a voice transcript feature for Android. This feature lets users see the content of a voice message in the form of text. With the latest Android beta update, some WhatsApp users have started receiving the voice message transcription feature.

First spotted by WABetaInfo, this feature arrives with WhatsApp Beta for Android v2.24.15.5 and currently rolling out to limited users. We updated the messaging app to the latest beta update but didn’t receive the feature on our device, so we couldn’t test it out.

WhatsApp Beta Voice Message Feature
Image Courtesy: WABetaInfo

To use this feature, you will have to download a language pack, so the app can transcribe the voice message into text. For now, only five languages are supported: English, Spanish, Portuguese (Brazil), Russian, and Hindi.

If you look at the screenshots, the feature looks quite similar to how Google has implemented voice message transcriptions over their Messages app.

Message Transcripts in Google Messages
Voice note transcription in Google Messages

Voice messages will remain end-to-end encrypted as all the transcription takes place on the device. This is probably why the app makes you download a language pack in the first place. The feature is still in beta so don’t expect it to come out anytime soon but it may arrive later this year.

What do you think about the voice message transcripts feature on Android? Do you think that you will find any use for it? Honestly, I can think of a couple of situations, like when I am commuting and I get a voice message from my family that I would prefer not to listen to inside a metro. Share your thoughts and concerns in the comments section below.

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