As expected, WeChat released an update today, one day after its third birthday. The same as the last update, the Android was out first and now only available on MyApp, Tencent’s Android app distribution platform. You have to download the MyApp app first in order to download the latest WeChat. And there’s only the Chinese version. English version will be released later with some different features.
It now supports making payments for Didi (the taxi app venture backed by Tencent), Licaitong (the mutual fund, released several days ago, similar t to Alipay’s Yuebao), purchases on Tencent’s online retailer Yixun, QQ Coins (the virtual currency used in Tencent ecosystem), movie tickets, lottery tickets, making donations, phone bills and splitting bills.
WeChat supports payments for nice categories of purchases
Other new features with the 5.2 version include,
- Converting voice messages into Chinese words with long click.
- Showing locations of conversation participants.
- Search for chat history or accounts.
- Notifications for mentions of user IDs in group chatting.
- Quick shares of photos to multiple WeChat friends.
- Emoticon recommendations when messages are being edited.
- A photo wall that has all photos of a conversation in one place.
- A redesigned UI.
Update: The English version released later enables linking a LinkedIn account and showing it on user’s profile.
BIG BIG UPDATE: This version of WeChat is now live on the Google Play Store. Upon opening WeChat after updating to that version, you are greeted with a short timeline (accessible in Settings > About > About WeChat) of WeChat’s major features until the very latest version and also included there is the date you joined WeChat. at the very end the “Enter WeChat” button appears below the words “WeChat Third Anniversary”. Also the very same version sports a new icon and UI that is different from the one portrayed in the screenshot.
Here are the new features of WeChat 5.2 for Android (Play Store version), listed in its in-app Features page:
1. Real-time location sharing with walkie talkie
2. Universal search including chat history search (already mentioned in this article)
3. Receive a special notification if you’re mentioned in a group chat (already mentioned in this article)
4. Share sticker sets with friends
5. Link your LinkedIn account and find more friends (already mentioned in this article)
6. Better image browsing in chats
As of this comment’s posting, WeChat’s Play Store page indicates the date of the latest update, but its version there is still listed as 5.1.
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