WhatsApp is reportedly investigating ways to make watching YouTube videos within its app a more seamless experience.

At the moment, WhatsApp will throw users to the YouTube website or companion smartphone app whenever a video link is tapped.

However, that could soon be about to change.

The Facebook-owned chat app includes code that hints at improved video playback functionality.

The hidden code hints at the ability to play YouTube videos within WhatsApp itself, with users able to continue watching the clip while navigating around the messenger.

WhatsApp appears to be leveraging the picture-in-picture functionality Apple first introduced in iOS 9.

According to WABetaInfo, which has an impressive track record when it comes to sniffing out upcoming features, unearthed the code.

The code was introduced in WhatsApp version 2.17.40.

According to WABetaInfo, users can pinch on the video to expand it within a chat window, or open the YouTube video fullscreen.

The picture-in-picture can also be moved around the app, to avoid it blocking the text beneath.

Apple introduced the ability to play YouTube videos inside their thumbnail previews in iOS 10.

It’s unclear when WhatsApp will flick the switch and bring its own version of the functionality to the chat app.

WABetaInfo says “this is not a feature that will be remotely enabled” and that instead “it will be enabled with a new WhatsApp update on the AppStore when the feature will be ready”.

The news comes as WhatsApp rolled-out the ability to delete sent messages.

WhatsApp users will be able to delete messages that they have either sent to a group or an individual chat.

Messages that have been successfully deleted in a chat will be replaced by “this message was deleted”.

There is one catch though – WhatsApp users are only able to delete messages within seven minutes of sending it.

The WhatsApp team said: “Deleting messages for everyone allows you to delete specific messages you have sent to either a group or an individual chat. 

“This is particularly useful if you sent a message to the wrong chat or if the message you sent contains a mistake.

“Messages you successfully delete for everyone will be replaced with “This message was deleted” in your recipients’ chats. 

“Similarly, if you see ‘This message was deleted’ in a chat, it means that the sender deleted their message for everyone.”

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