Custom notifications coming to WhatsApp for Windows Phone users with Update 3

One of the great new features for Windows Phone 8 Update 3 is actually for developers: adding custom tones to their app. While Windows Phone customers have had the ability to add custom notifications to their devices for a little while now, being able to assign them to different apps was a little trickier.

Late last night, WhatsApp beta version 368 began rolling out to testers in the private program. On board under the Settings is a new section called ‘notification tones’.

Diving deeper into 368, users are presented with two options:

  • Tone for individual chats
  • Tone for group chats

Users through the Windows Phone PC app can transfer their own notifications sounds to their phones. Once installed, they can select that tone through this menu system in WhatsApp, giving users the ability to have a dedicated alert message. The WhatsApp developers could also have their own tone as well, though as of the 368 build they do not have one available.

Having custom notification sounds is kind of a big deal, as it allows users to distinguish between incoming alerts on their phones. More specifically, if a user’s phone is out of sight, hearing the WhatsApp notification is a great way to know if the alert is a priority or not.

So far, only a handful of apps on Windows Phone have taken advantage of this new feature (Weather+ and 6tag are two examples). With Windows Phone 8.1, expected in late spring, a sophisticated notification center will also be available to help users better understand incoming alerts and notifications.

There’s no word on when this custom alert function will go out to the general public, though the team behind WhatsApp generally have a turnaround of only a few weeks for beta-features. Recently, we reported on a beta feature that allows users to control the downloading of media through WhatsApp.

Thanks, Madhan N (WPCentral forums) and anonymous, for the screenshots.


Reader comments

Custom notifications coming to WhatsApp for Windows Phone users with Update 3


first u have to rectify some problems,that we have faced now...

I didnt get notification from whatsapp, whenever i receiving message, please check..

I have checked settings...

It is open for everyone, thanx to MS! The app builders have to update their apps for custom sounds, not MS.

But i dont mean for apps. I wish i could got to my settings and pick a sound for my notification. Like it is for texting

and you dont want a cake and soda and 1000 dollars with your order, mr complainer?
lol so funny people like you just know how to complain instead of wait for the damn feature and use it even if it only applies to Whatsapp and not global (which is the point of this feature, give apps different sounds the developer wants)

Im not complaining i can take what i can get.. But wouldnt it be smart to implement both of these features and give us an option. It so happens i like the sounds in 6tag. What happens if i dont like the sound what up makes me chose... Nothing wrong with options. Im just giving my opinion.

Apparently suggesting better features is moaning.. Let windows phone be the way it is then... Screw change thats for iheads

Lol don't listen to these apologists. Suggesting and requesting more feature is nothing to be ashamed at. I have wanted what you've been asking for since dell venue pro years ago. Hope they implement it but giving the devs the ability to have their own is golden and I hope more devs take advantage other than just the whatsup team and rudy

@ Ricardo, it's safe to say if it's in Android/iOS versions, it's on the table to be ported over to Windows Phone. But *until* we see it in a beta, we won't report on speculation if it's coming or not.

Line already has custom backgrounds, I believe. Having background images is not 'against Metro', which are guidelines for developers, not dogma ;)

yeah Line has nice background images, and it looks nice... not even Win8 version has that yet, or desktop version.
but anyway, to me its stupid all that "against metro" crap thing... look at win8 start screen, you can have any image as a background and it looks fine. and it sounds like people want to limit designers/developers work with that excuse of "metro whatever", and then they complain how "boring and plain" WP8 apps look compared to android and iOS

The Microsoft design language (aka Metro) does NOT require the developers to create "boring and plain" apps. Much in the contrary. If you look at early Windows Phone apps such as IMDB you will see that we were already using image backgrounds. This is done in many WinPhone apps and is very much in line with the design guidelines (see also my comment below)

Actually "metro" is inspired from design movements such as the magnificent work of Saul Bass who often places pictures (well video, but you get my drift) behind text such as in the opening credit of North by Northwest. So having a custom background is very much in line with the spirit of the Microsoft design language. Just take care to make the background dark (or light, in the light theme) enough so that the text remains well readable. We usually do that by applying some transparency to the background image.


Can't wait for the next WP update, it will finally be at feature parity for core functionality as other phones. Now I just want a 5" device with 3 rows.

Yeah I agree with you on getting a 5" or above device. Its awesome to use and I currently use a 1520

Perhaps you should practice better reading comprehension before jumping down someone's throat. He's asking if you can have custom noties for other apps. Not just what they've allowed in gdr3

I want notification sounds when the chat is already open too, im forever missing messages because it makes no sound if chat is open

When the hell will they remove that annoying vibration that messes my battery up? AND get rid of audio API COMPLETELY? :'(

That is true, but there has to be a way to stop 7.x app at a point and then make 8.0 app a month later even if that means halting these tiny additions they make. How could any of these features be important to anyone more than their phone battery life!?

+1 they gotta cut the audio API completely, that as a priority should easily trump custom sounds or wallpapers or UI redesign

Pretty sure moaning incessantly about stuff you wish you had that's unrelated takes place in the forums

how is this unrelated? 

or you're going to post this on every comment here that is suggesting features?



I definitely agree with the file transfer feature. Today morning I wanted to send a .pdf document across to a friend only realizing that its not supported by Whatsapp. Hope they take into account tansfer of documents.

Whatsapp lock apps is NOT same as having it as whatsapp feature. Android APIs are used make a third party app to lock a third-party IM app. Cant get any more ridiculous.

Does this version fixes that thing about not having access to the Skydrive/OneDrive photo albums? At least for me that's more important than any new feature.

This looks like it can choose from all the pre loaded tones 'Alert 5' but i could be wrong. If so, why hasn't 6tag/snap got that privilege?

Niice, finally no more identical tones for group chats and individual chats. By the way you can also add custom tones via drag and drop into the ringtone folder if you have your phone plugged in via usb cable (not sure about bluetooth :P). I personally find it soo much quicker and easier. Then again I'm still using windows 7, looking back - i had been using desktop mode for like 95% of the time when i had win8 installed via vmware.... Lol.

I have a Lumia 900 and it has Windows 7 in it. The problem is that it is not allowing me to change the tones for my WhatsApp message because there IS no setting to change those tones.


Is there any way to bypass that problem?

That's so cool! Hopefully we get the ability to save files,get backgrounds and get a WhatsApp lock. I know im asking for too much :P But hope this happens. Way to go WhatsApp. :D

Developers have to implement it. They can add a Lock feature.
Its nothing to do with WP at all.

Nice one! I always wanted to change that 'windows phone default notification sound' but no way it could be done now. Well, at least this is closer to what i wish! Can't wait!

Another app that taking advantage of GDR3 custom notification tone: My Talking Tomcat. *buuzzz buzz buzz* meow

Awesome. Has the image aspect ratio problem been sorted out, ie the bug that makes pictures taken with the app look stretched?

M glad to see these features.but can WhatsApp first work to give us a more responsive app?? Opening lag is horrifying.get that done with please.please :-\

They need a way to make it speak messages the same way the message app does over bluetooth. I dont care too much about replying, but it's nice to be able to hear what's incoming while I am driving



I'd really like a way to turn off notifications during certain times. Some friends have the habit of replying to messages at 1am or sometimes the notifications are delayed. It's awful being woken up just to see it was a "lol" or something completely unimportant. I've started turning off all data at night just so they don't come through, but I don't have to silence my phone & miss out on important notifications

and that's the reason why neither Facebook chat or Hangouts will be ever the winners. whatsapp support all platforms with full support not just an app that they forgot! 

Who cares about the tone... I want to send videos from my library, something thats long available on other os and on wp people get horny with tones. Everytime i want to send an hd video, i first have to convert it on my android or pc.

I do. Because the default tone is freaking soft! I need to push the volume up to 24/30 in order to hear it.

I use no sound at all in whatsapp, so for me it doesn't change anything. But I would love that whatsapp compresses videos before sending it, as it does in Android and iOS. Usually I can't send a video that I made because it has more than 19mb.

i hope they have re-included the 'text size' adjustment rather than simply directing users to the system settings. text size is fine elsewhere in the phone but i need adjustability in whatsapp itself

Transfer Audio files, Chat background, hide last seen.
All of this is needed.
If this comes.
WhatsApp is complete for me.

I alredy cahnged my notification sound .. In every app.. For those who have custom rom can change from wproottools controlpanel/

Ugh, this is really frustrating.  Just give me a way to drop the toast notifications and keep the live tile.  That would make me so so so so happy.

I want to see online /last seen notification on pinned contact. I have one contact pinned (big tile) on start screen that I chat with every single day, and would love it to show online /last seen thing on that tile. Whatsapp team please make me happy))

Complete overall of the UI! Bring some customization to what's app including background and other unique stuff that make the windows phone version better then android and IOS

Having different notification sound for individual & group message is the biggest thing I miss from Symbian days. Just waiting for this update 

Still wish there was a proper messaging hub API that everything hooked into, and you link contacts from WeChat, WhatsApp, BBM, Line, Gchat, etc etc in contacts hub and it maintained a history of all interactions, then you just pick interaction method the way you do with SMS/Facebook, and the app developers just have API hooks (e.g. Snapchat would delete a video after viewing).

Wow, finally. Took the Whatsapp devs some time since the GDR3 release. I gave up on waiting and used WPH tweaks to change the tone of the "notificationtoast" to something else on my Ativ S. Nice to see the hacking community at XDA-Devs works faster dan app developers. Apparantly, Whatsapp used the "NotificationToast" sound this for their app aswell. Probably stopped using the "notificationtoasts" default now, and created two seperate sound entries in Windows Phone using the new API. 

Awesome! I have waited for this to happen ever since GDR3+Lumia Black arrived. Now for WeChat and Line to jump on the custom ringtone bandwagon...

i was formate my mobile lumia 720  after  when i try to make install whatupp  can not . now my feel bad . i dont know how to fix problem since i find in store but can not found pls i need fix this problem