In February this year, WhatsApp had rolled out the Authentication feature for iOS beta users, making it possible to use Touch ID to unlock the app. After more than six months, the feature has finally been made available for Android beta users today.
As spotted by the folks over at WABetaInfo, the Fingerprint lock feature will allow WhatsApp beta users on Android to open the app using the fingerprint sensor on their phone. Similar to the Authentication feature on iOS, users can still reply to messages from the notifications shade and answer calls, even when the app is locked.
The feature is available in the latest 2.19.221 beta version of the app. If you have already updated WhatsApp to the latest version and still do not see the Fingerprint lock feature, you should try reinstalling the app after backing up your chat history. In case the feature still doesn’t show up, all you can do is wait for it to be activated, provided your device meets the requirements.
To enable the feature, head over to Settings > Account > Privacy and tap on the Fingerprint lock option. Once you enable it, you will need to touch the fingerprint sensor every time you wish to unlock WhatsApp.
You can also choose how long the app should stay unlocked once you open it. You can have the feature automatically lock the app after 1 minute or 30 minutes. If you disable the ‘Show content in notifications’ option, WhatsApp will no longer show the sender and message preview when you have Fingerprint lock feature enabled.