How To Use View Once Feature To Send Disappearing Photos and Videos in WhatsApp

WhatsApp had recently announced a new upcoming feature that would delete the image or video after the receiver has seen it once. This of course would not be true for all messages but only those messages specified by the sender to self-destruct. This feature, now rolled out to many, is called View Once and is pretty exciting to use. If you do not have this feature yet then you could possible update WhatsApp from the Google Play Store and then check.

How To Send Disappearing Photos and Videos in WhatsApp

Self-disappearing Photos and Videos via WhatsApp or “View Once” Mode


“View Once” Mode is an inbuilt feature of WhatsApp and can be used on WhatsApp only.  This feature is now available to most WhatsApp users and will be rolled out soon to those who haven’t received it.

This feature is known as View Once and is designed with the purpose of user privacy. You can now share a video or an image privately and with the assurance that it will get auto-deleted once the intended recipient has seen it. The media sent in this mode will not be stored in the receiver’s phone storage and cannot be viewed by anyone else. It will also not consume any extra storage of the user’s phone storage and as all the messages are encrypted, even WhatsApp will not know what was sent.

Secrets about the Secret Messages Mode (View Once) in WhatsApp

The View Once feature is set out to maintain the privacy of the users but it does have certain limitations that you must know before you start using it and send messages that you thought were destroyed once opened.

Fact # 1. If a receiver has disabled read receipts and opens a message sent in this mode, then the sender will be notified. Messages sent in normal mode might not receive the “Blue Ticks” when read receipts are disabled but this is a different mode so different rules apply. There is no way you can prevent the Sender from knowing that the message sent in View Once the mode has been opened.

Fact # 2. Now, you know that the videos and images disappear in this mode once the receiver has opened, read, and closed them. However, did it strike your mind that the receiver can always take a screenshot of the message and the sender will not be informed about this? This feature also exists in Snapchat where any screenshot of the auto-disappearing message is notified to the sender. WhatsApp acknowledges this limitation and notifies its users in a popup when you use the View Once Mode for the first time.

Fact # 3. If the sender sends a video or image via View Once, then it cannot be viewed in the normal chat conversation mode.

Fact # 4. The already existing Disappearing Messages option in WhatsApp is different from the View Once Mode. The messages sent while the Disappearing mode is turned on will auto-disappear or expire after 7 days. However, the messages sent by View Once mode will cease to exist after the message has been seen by the recipient.

It is important to note that all the messages sent after the Disappearing Messages are turned on will be lost, including text, images, and video. However, the View Once mode applies to Images and Video only.

How to send images and Videos in View Once Mode?

Once Whatsapp rolls out this feature to all its customers, you can use the View Once mode in the following way:

Step 1: Launch WhatsApp and tap on any chat you wish to send the message.

Step 2: Now, choose any image or video from the Message Picker option.

Step 3: After you have selected the image or video you will get a screen to type in the caption before sending it. On this very screen, you will also find a new button that would be located in the bottom right corner labeled as View Once. This button will turn green when enabled and you can also send the messages in the normal way.

Step 4: The image/video sent will not be visible in the chat window. But you will see a text message that says “Photo” and a clock icon next to it.

Step 5: When the receiver opens the message. The text “Photo” will change to “Opened” and this will inform the sender that the message was opened or viewed by the receiver. This option does not fall under the restrictions of read receipt settings and will be displayed whether they are turned on or off.

Some Useful Third-party WhatsApp Applications

I am not sure how useful you will find this feature once it rolls out on your device but I would like to share with you certain apps that can prove very useful. These apps are to be used with WhatsApp and provide features that are not available like viewing all WhatsApp media in one place, recovering deleted Whatsapp images and Chat locker for WhatsApp.

Smart Phone Cleaner

Phone cleaner

Smart Phone Cleaner is an amazing app that can clean and optimize your device to enhance the performance of your smartphone. It has several features like app uninstaller, junk and cache remover, malware protection, private browser, app hibernation among others. It also contains a WhatsApp module that allows users to view and manage all Whatsapp media in one place and inform how much space is taken by the WhatsApp application.

Price: $0 with in-app purchase

Photos Recovery

photos recovery

Photos Recovery app helps users to scan the deepest sectors of their phone’s storage and pull out the hidden and deleted images. This also includes the images that you have deleted from your normal WhatsApp chats. And only Time Will Tell that when the View Once mode goes live, whether we can retrieve the automatically disappearing images using this application. But it is still nevertheless a great app to use to recover accidentally deleted photos.

Price: $0

Locker For Whats Chat App

Locker for whatsapp

Locker for Whats Chat App helps you lock the complete WhatsApp app or an individual chat only with a passcode or fingerprint impression. This protects your secret chats from prying eyes even if your phone is with your friends and family.

Price: $0 with in-app purchase

The Final Word On How to Send Disappearing Photos and Videos in WhatsApp

This is all that you need to know about the View Once feature in WhatsApp. This feature is to send those images and videos to someone that you wish them to view once. This would be feasible in the case of videos but if an image is sent then the recipient can take a screenshot and view it again. WhatsApp should provide a screenshot blocker functionality when the image is viewed or at the least send a notification to the sender that a screenshot has been taken like Snapchat.

Finally, I fail to understand the exact use of such a feature and its benefit. Do drop in a note in the comments section if you find uses for this feature and what would you use it for. Follow us on social media – FacebookInstagram and YouTube.

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