WhatsApp has always compressed photos that you sent to your friends or contacts on the messaging service. The compression was fine back in the day, but WhatsApp downsizing your photos to 720p resolution is definitely not enough in this day and age. Thankfully, this is about to change soon.
WABetaInfo reports that WhatsApp is working on an option to let you send photos in “Best Quality.” The feature currently shows up for iPhone users who are a part of the WhatsApp beta channel on TestFlight. The option is present under WhatsApp Settings -> Storage and Data, where there is a new section for Media Upload Quality. Apart from Data saver and Auto, there’s now an option to send photos in Best Quality.
Sadly, WhatsApp will not let you send photos in their original resolution with this option enabled. The company will still downsize and compress the photo to reduce their size. Photos larger than 2048 x 2048 might be resized, but anything smaller will be sent as it is. The report notes that the new WhatsApp compression will retain 80 percent of the original photo quality. This new option is only limited to the photos that you send to your friends in a chat. It does not pertain to the compression applied to the photos you upload to your status or profile.
The feature is currently under testing and has been rolled out to select WhatsApp for iPhone beta testers. However, the ability to send photos in HD quality should soon make its way to WhatsApp’s stable channel on the App Store for all iPhone users.