WhatsApp makes navigating Communities easier with a new icon


  • WhatsApp is frequently adding new features to catch up with rivals like Telegram, with recent updates including a Discord-style general chat room and message editing for community admins.
  • The latest update introduces a visual overhaul for the community icon, using a stack of cards to signify the presence of group chats within the community.
  • WhatsApp is aiming to bring together community announcement groups and community groups under one roof in a future update, making it easier for users to navigate through their various chats in one window.

WhatsApp’s set of features is ever-growing, though one would say the platform is largely playing catch up to rival services like Telegram in terms of feature additions. The official rollout of WhatsApp Communities commenced last November, and the Meta-owned service has left no stone unturned in refining its functionality since then. Thanks to WhatsApp’s flourishing beta program for Android, we’ve picked up several clues about future updates to communities, including a Discord-style general chat room plus a message editing feature for community admins, among others. The folks at WhatsApp are making another change to communities in the form of a visual overhaul for its avatar/icon.

With this new beta update, the community icon features a stack of cards behind it, supposedly to indicate that this community has some group chats in it. While WABetaInfo claims this update is part of WhatsApp beta for Android v2.23.20.3, the site notes that some beta testers with versions and may also see this in action.

WhatsApp Community Stack Icon

As WABetaInfo puts it, this visual tweak aligns with WhatsApp’s plans to bring together the community announcement group and community groups under one roof, providing an easier means for people to navigate through their various chats from one window.

This minor change in the display image also makes

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Why subreddits have gone dark

If you’re browsing Reddit today, you may have already noticed that it feels a lot emptier than usual. There may even be some subreddits you can’t visit or some links from other places that lead to now private subreddits. It’s even possible that the full site is currently not working correctly for you. It’s unclear what’s causing this latter problem, but the former issue has manifested because there’s currently a big protest underway against Reddit’s corporate leadership. Here’s everything you need to know about it.

Thousands of subreddits are currently set private, Reddit down as a whole

At the time of writing, more than 6,000 subreddits are offline, taking private in protest to recent Reddit management decisions. It looks like the strike was big enough of a change to Reddit’s server infrastructure that it brought the full site down, with Reddit as a whole partially inaccessible. When visiting the homepage, it’s currently not possible to view any posts. The exact cause of the problem is unclear. One other possibility is that there might be a distributed denial-of-service (DDoS) attack ongoing. Downdetector is making clear that this is a widespread problem in any case.

Screenshot of Reddit homepage that isn't fully loaded, with banner saying

Regardless of what causes Reddit to go down, the strike is a coordinated effort among users and moderators who want to voice their concerns about how Reddit’s leadership is handling the transition to a paid API, the interface between third-party services and Reddit’s content. Many subreddits have pledged to go private for 48 hours on June 12 and June 13 in an effort to voice their dissatisfaction. Reddit’s leadership is supposed to see just how much they need to rely on their community for a constant influx of content and thus monetization.

Among the communities that have joined the protests are big tech subreddits like r/Android, r/Apple,

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Meta introduces Community Chats, blending Messenger with Facebook Groups

What you need to know

  • Meta announces Community Chats coming to Messenger and Facebook Groups.
  • The new feature will allow admins to create large community chats for like-minded people with multiple channels in their own tabs for organization.
  • Testing for this new feature begins on Messenger first with Meta looking to expand it to Facebook Groups in the weeks after.

Meta announced on Tuesday that it’s begun testing its new Community Chats feature coming to Messenger and Facebook.

Facebook wants to help its users better connect with one another and reach more like-minded people with this new Community Chats feature. According to Meta’s post, the company will begin allowing people to test Community Chats within Messenger. This will give users the ability to create a community, start chatting, create audio channels, and invite people to join their group.

Meta says it wants to help users engage “in real-time with larger communities over shared interests.” With that, Community Chats is designed to be a feature that helps people “connect more deeply” on topics they share an interest in. Community Chats will allow users to engage through text chat, audio, and video. In addition, Meta states that this new chat function will seamlessly combine Messenger and Facebook Groups.

The admin (creator) of a Community Chat will have tools to create an easy-to-navigate experience by placing certain topics in their own categories. This allows users to find and tap on what conversation they’d like to engage in, much like WhatsApp’s recent addition of Communities. It also seems as though admins can customize the look of any given chat within their community, such as the background.

Administrators will have a few options to choose from when creating

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Android tackles power management w/ community help

Google has unveiled new community-written test suites for Android devices, intended to address power management and other issues.

For years now, Android has had the Compatibility Test Suite (CTS), an automated process that ensures an in-development phone, tablet, or other device is compliant with various requirements of Android. Of course, the full Android Compatibility Definition Document (CDD) is massive and ever-growing, and it will likely never be fully covered by CTS.

Because of that, quite a few devices have released over the years that don’t fully comply with Android’s requirements in a way that has negatively impacted app developers. One of the more frequently cited examples is the way that various Android device makers handle things like foreground services and background apps. This issue is showcased on the website “Don’t Kill My App,” created by Urbandroid, the developers of Sleep as Android.

For its part, Google has decided to let the developer community tackle these issues more directly by launching “Developer-powered CTS” (CTS-D) tests which have been written and contributed by the community. As such, these tests will be open source and can be run by any Android developer or enthusiast who wants to see if their device is compliant.

The first batch of CTS-D tests was contributed by Petr Nalevka, head of the Urbandroid team, and it checks the use of foreground services and wake locks on Android devices. Looking ahead, Google is seeking the contribution of more tests related to power management.

However, it’s not clear how effective these CTS-D tests will be at improving the Android ecosystem. Despite the fact that Google is only allowing tests that cover parts of the Android CDD marked as “MUST” — meaning any device that fails these tests is not a compliant Android product — the company is

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Google’s July 2023 security patch is here for Pixel devices

Quick Links

In case you’re thinking, “today’s a Wednesday, but Pixel updates usually land on Mondays,” you’re right, Google is indeed a little bit behind its usual schedule. This month’s release has been delayed slightly until today, as a result of 4th July’s federal holiday to celebrate Independence Day in the US. Nonetheless, Google’s freshly baked Pixel software updates for July are finally here.

Of course, this isn’t one of the big feature drop updates (that was last month), but device owners can obviously look forward to the latest security patches and a handful of fixes and improvements. Notably, several Samsung Galaxy devices have also started receiving the new set of patches.

July 2023 Android Security Bulletin

The July 2023 Android Security Bulletin outlines a total of 24 vulnerabilities in the Android Framework and system components and a total of 20 vulnerabilities in the kernel and vendor components. The CVE numbers, type of vulnerability, and affected OS components are listed in the tables published by Google. Nearly all the vulnerabilities in the Android Framework and system components have been addressed with the security update to the 2023-07-01 patch level, whereas the vulnerabilities in the kernel and closed-source vendor components have been addressed with the 2023-07-05 patch level.

For more information on how the monthly Android security update process works, we recommend reading our explainer available here.

Pixel Update Bulletin/Functional Update

In addition to patching the vulnerabilities affecting all Android devices, the July 2023 Android security update also patches a few issues exclusively affecting Google’s own Pixel phones. These are documented in the Pixel Update Bulletin for this month.

The full changelog is below:

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Reddit broken? It’s not broken, it’s a Reddit protest.

Reddit stock photo 7

Edgar Cervantes / Android Authority


  • On June 12, 2023, a major Reddit protest began.
  • The protest sees over 3,500 subreddits “going dark” to protest new site policies.
  • For at least the next 48 hours, huge chunks of Reddit will not work.

If you opened up Reddit today hoping to see some cute cat photos on r/Aww or to find out some new trivia on r/TodayILearned, you probably faced some problems doing so. Don’t worry; there’s nothing wrong with your phone or computer. Those popular subreddits voluntarily shut down in the form of protest.

Starting today, June 12, 2023, over 3,500 subreddits will “go dark” to protest planned changes to how the site treats third-party developers. In other words, the fact that you can’t access major sections of Reddit is not an accident but very much by design.

If that’s all you need to know, you can simply close Reddit and move on with your day. Theoretically, a large portion of those subreddits will be back on June 14. Until then, you’ll just need to not use Reddit, which, of course, is what the protestors are banking on. However, if you’re curious about why this is happening, we have a brief explanation below.

Background: How does Reddit work?

To understand this protest, you need first to understand how Reddit works. Reddit is made up of millions of subreddits, with each subreddit focused on a particular topic. For example, r/Marvel is centered on the Marvel universe. Likewise, r/Android is focused on Android phones and the operating system itself, while r/OnePlus is solely focused on OnePlus products. There are millions of subreddits, although only a tiny percentage of them are considered to be active.

Anyone can create a subreddit that focuses on any topic(s) they choose. However, each subreddit needs at least

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Yik Yak users are protesting the app’s makeover after acquisition by Sidechat

Yik Yak users are enraged over the changes being made to the anonymous social app after its quiet acquisition by the similarly focused campus chat app, Sidechat. While Yik Yak had focused on anonymous posting within a local community, Sidechat is working to build private communities for colleges. Initially, Yik Yak had been pushing its users to migrate to the Sidechat app after the deal went through. But more recently, Yik Yak users tell us the company is pursuing a different strategy — instead of forced migrations, Yik Yak’s own app has been given a massive overhaul that effectively turns it into Sidechat.

As Yik Yak user Aaron Payment, a student at St. John Fisher University, told us, the updated Yik Yak app is just “Sidechat reskinned now.” They also noted that if you sign up for Sidechat, you’ll see everything on your local Yik Yak because both apps appear to now be running on the same servers.

“Not only did they change everything good about the app, but they made it so you have to use your college email to prove that you’re in college. That way, they can easily track you and share your data for marketing purposes,” Aaron explained. Before, Yik Yak only required a phone number to sign up.

It’s not clear whether the company has plans to track its users or share their data, but it’s a valid concern for users of a previously anonymity-focused app, and an example of the difficulties any sort of anonymous app would have in finding an exit. Any changes that disrupt the app’s prior commitment to end users around protecting their identities are going to be met with skepticism, distrust  and anger.

The latest changes were officially announced on Yik Yak’s Instagram account on Thursday where they soon received

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What are WhatsApp Communities and how can I use them?

WhatsApp Communities are here. In April 2022, Zuckerberg announced the umbrella feature that may rival the best social apps. Communities presents an arranged communication system for large organizations or anyone looking to keep their WhatsApp groups in one place. You can send messages to everyone via a primary group or limit information to subgroups. This way, no one misses vital news while they’re discussing other topics.

Also, you’re not continuously scrolling through Chats when you need to find a group. Although features such as 32-people voice and video calls are yet to roll out, creating communities is possible on your favorite Android phones and tablets, including iOS devices. If you’d like to maximize the benefits of WhatsApp Communities for your organization or virtual hangouts, here’s how.

What is WhatsApp Communities, and how does it work?

WhatsApp Communities is a feature that allows you to sort multiple WhatsApp groups under a larger one known as a community. You can create a community for your organization’s Finance, General Management, and Human Resources department groups. You can also create a community for family, friends, and colleagues.

When you make a new community, it automatically becomes the Announcement group, and you are its Admin. It’s where you share important information and everyone sees it, regardless of the group they belong to. If you send a message to a subgroup, only that group sees it. Furthermore, only community admins can send messages to the Announcement group, but you can assign admin roles to members to enable them to do the same.

Adding groups to your community doesn’t mean members will automatically join every other group. They can only see the groups when they view the community’s info and need to request to join. Community admins can remove anyone from a group, but the member

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WhatsApp’s Phone Number Privacy Feature for Communities Reportedly Rolling Out to Android, iOS Beta Testers

WhatsApp is reportedly rolling out a new privacy-focused feature for community members. The new functionality previously said to be in testing would let users hide their phone numbers while joining a community. The feature called “phone number privacy”, is reportedly available to all Android and iOS beta testers. With this, users can participate in conversations and show their reactions to messages by hiding their names and phone numbers from other members of the community. The Meta-owned instant messaging app has not officially revealed when it intends to make the phone number privacy feature live for all users.

As per a report by WhatsApp features tracker WABetainfo, WhatsApp has released a phone number privacy feature for communities for all Android and iOS beta testers. It is said to be available for all Android and iOS beta testers with WhatsApp beta for Android version and iOS beta version for iOS respectively.

With this feature, the phone number of the user can be hidden from all members while joining a community. At present, the community participants list is already hidden in the community announcement group, but if a user interacts with messages through reactions, their phone number would be revealed. The new phone number privacy feature will ensure that your contact number will remain out of sight of other participants in the Community even while adding reactions to a message.

The report also includes a screenshot showing the phone number privacy feature for communities, giving users an idea of what it might look like when it starts widely rolling out. It can be accessed from the ‘Community announcement group info’. While turning on this feature, WhatsApp alerts users that their number will stay hidden from other participants except for the community admin and the members who have already saved their contact

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The 5 Best Social Media Apps for Making Friends in Your Community

Whether you’ve just moved to a new city, are working from home, or have lost touch with old friends, there’s no need to feel isolated. There are apps at the tips of your fingers that will have you connecting with others in minutes.

What sets these apps apart from other social networking apps like Instagram and TikTok is that they encourage in-person meetings. When you’re connecting with people in your community, chances are that you’re also creating memorable experiences.

If you’re hoping to find like-minded individuals in your area, check out these social networking apps designed to promote a sense of togetherness.

1. Hey! VINA

Hey! VINA is an app created by women, for women. Unlike dating apps, Hey! VINA encourages friendship-only connections by matching you up with women in your area.

While initiating you into the app, it asks you to choose from communities and interests you identify with, such as: introverts, extroverts, dog owners, gamer girls, foodies, homebodies, mothers, expats, and LGBTQI+ to name just a few.

Profiles of women show up with a photo, their location, some personality traits, interests, as well as communities that the person belongs to. You can then swipe right or left if you are interested in connecting with that person. Just like a dating up, if there’s a match, you can begin chatting.

There is also a section where you can make plans, host your own events, and discover things going on in your area. To add a new level of fun, there is an assortment of quizzes and personality tests for you to play around with to get to know yourself better. If you’ve played the quizzes, your results show up on your profile for others to see.

Download: Hey! VINA for Android | iOS (Free)

2. Meetup

The Meetup app

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