Meta is copying Telegram channels in Instagram

Meta is introducing its own take on Telegram channels with broadcast channels on Instagram, CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced recently. With the new format, creators can broadcast messages and updates to a broad audience of followers that opt in to following the channel. Followers will not be able to post in the channels, though they can emoji react to posts and vote in polls. Zuckerberg’s channel, called Meta Channel, will be a place where he shares “news and updates on all the products and tech we’re building at Meta.” Down the line, channels will “support collabs with guest appearances, AMAs and more,” Zuckerberg says. Channels are only available on Instagram to start but will be coming to Messenger and Facebook “in the coming months.” If you get access, you can start a channel from your Instagram inbox, and soon, you’ll be able to pin the channel link to your profile to make it easier for others to join. Channels can be open to all of your followers, but you can make them exclusive to paid subscribers.

WhatsApp’s latest iOS update adds picture-in-picture for video calls

WhatsApp has finally started to roll out picture-in-picture mode for video calls on iOS, as spotted earlier by 9to5Mac. The feature, which WhatsApp first started testing last year, should let you open up other apps during video calls without any disruptions. Just like picture-in-picture mode on FaceTime, WhatsApp will shrink your video call to a small window that sits atop whatever app you switch to. This allows you to partake in the call while reading a relevant document, surfing the web, or perhaps even playing a game. You can gain access to picture-in-picture mode in the latest WhatsApp update on iOS (version 23.3.77), but you might have to wait a bit to use it. WhatsApp says it will roll out the feature “over the coming weeks” and the same goes for the handful of other features bundled in the update. This includes the ability to add captions when sending documents, support for longer descriptions and subjects for groups, and the introduction of personalised avatars that you can use as stickers and profile photos.