WhatsApp is currently testing a new feature, which brings different playback speeds for voice messages on Android. The feature has been rolled out with the latest WhatsApp beta version 18.104.22.168 update for Android according to a report by WABetaInfo. The report further states that the feature is also supported on the previous version 22.214.171.124 too.
To test the feature, Android WhatsApp beta users can update the app from the Google Play Store, and then open any chat to play a voice note. After a user plays a voice note, a speed icon will show up next to the timeline slider. Tapping on that, you can control the speed of the voice message.
The updated UI comes with three different playback speeds 1x, 1.5x and 2x. The voice note will initially play at the normal speed, but once you tap on the speed icon, it will upgrade the speed by 1x, tap it again to increase it to 1.5x and then to 2x. As of now, there is no option for a slower playback speed.
The update is being rolled out in phases, so as to avoid server congestion. So if you are yet to receive it, do not worry, it will be made available in a few days.
To recall, WhatsApp spotted testing the different playback speeds for voice messages feature last month according to an earlier report by WABetaInfo. However, at that time, the feature was disabled from the code and it was being tested internally.
As of now, the feature is currently only available to Android WhatsApp beta users, and it is not yet available for iOS beta users of the app. The company has not stated when it will be made available to all users, however, seeing the speed of development for this feature, we expect the wait to not be as long as for some other features.