When sending messages in WhatsApp, you may have noticed that your messages come with checkmarks attached to them – and that they change over time. Those checkmarks give you some information about the status of your message.
When you first send your message, you will see a small clock symbol instead of those checkmarks. This status indicates that the message is being sent but hasn’t departed your phone just yet. Now the status may change so quickly that you don’t often (if at all) see this state.
The next stage is one with a single checkmark. This means that your message has been sent, but not yet arrived at the other person’s phone. Now, if a message doesn’t send because of connectivity issues and your message has one checkmark already, the issue is not on your side, but on the recipients!
When your recipient receives the message, the checkmark will get a twin – two grey checkmarks mean that the message has arrived on the other person’s device. In group chats only, the second mark does not appear until everyone in the group has received the message.
The final stage is when the two checkmarks turn blue – this means that the other party has opened and read your message. Of course, the mark is no indicator of whether or not they actually read the message, but it means that they opened the chat, at the very least.
This is a function you can turn off – by going to your Chats settings via the Settings menu, you can switch off read receipts. This means that your checkmarks will stay grey – you’ll know whether your messages have arrived at the recipient’s phone, but not whether they have opened the chat yet.