Remember that message you accidentally hit the send button to? Remember the time when Mark’s message was accidentally sent to Mathew? Well yes, we are talking about the good old days where message once sent couldn’t be retrieved back by the delete or the unsend button.
Everyone precisely remembers how the WhatsApp Delete for Everyone button came as a boon for all the butterfingers. Initially, the Delete for Everyone option allowed us to delete a message within 7 minutes while now you can delete a WhatsApp message for about an hour after it has been sent.
A similar feature was later rolled out by Facebook-owned Company, Instagram. But unlike WhatsApp, here the other person doesn’t get notified about the deletion of the message. While WhatsApp has a time limit of an hour for you to delete your message, on Instagram, both the parties can delete the message whenever they want to.
While both the platforms are owned by the Facebook owner, Mark Zuckerburg himself, he particularly launched the delete feature for Facebook late. Earlier until now, you could see the ‘Remove for you’ option while you clicked on the message. The social media platform has now introduced a ‘Remove for all’ feature in its new update.
For a quick recap, here’s how Facebook upgraded to the Unsend option:
1. Facebook Messenger never had an Unsend option, except in its encrypted Secret messaging product where you can set an expiration timer on chats, or in Instagram Direct.
2. In April 2018, TechCrunch reported that some of Mark Zuckerberg’s messages had been removed from the inboxes of recipients, including non-employees. There was no trace of the chats in the message thread, leaving his conversation partners looking like they were talking to themselves, but email receipts proved the messages had been sent but later even that disappeared.
3. Facebook claimed this was partly because it was “limiting the retention period for Mark’s messages” for security purposes in the wake of the Sony Pictures hack, yet it never explained why only some messages to some people had been removed.
4. The next morning, Facebook changed its tune and announced it’d build an Unsend button for everyone, providing this statement: “We have discussed this feature several times . . . We will now be making a broader delete message feature available. This may take some time. And until this feature is ready, we will no longer be deleting any executives’ messages. We should have done this sooner — and we’re sorry that we did not.”
5. Six months later in October 2018, Facebook still hadn’t launched Unsend, but then TechCrunch found Facebook had been prototyping the feature.
6. In November, Facebook started to roll out the feature with the current “Remove for everyone” design and 10-minute limit.
7. Now every iOS and Messenger user globally will get the Unsend feature.
So all the butterfingers now don’t have to worry about sending the wrong message or sending it to the wrong person. You can now officially delete the sent message. But, that better be quick because the ‘Remove for all’ option is only applicable for 10 minutes. That means, 10 minutes is all you have to unsend the wrong message!