8 Things You Can’t Do in WeChat App

Foreigners can’t live in China without the help of apps like WeChat. Whether you want to chat with your friends or pay to a roadside vendor, you need to have WeChat app. Though popularity of WeChat is mainly due to its simple design and features, you have lots of restriction as well. In this article, we will list out 8 WeChat limitations you should know when using the app.

Related: WeChat Vs WhatsApp – a comparison.

8 Things You Can’t Do in WeChat App

1. Online Status

WeChat does not show whether the user is currently available online or not available. This has both advantage as well as disadvantage. As a user, you do not need to worry about hiding your online status when you do not want to reveal. However, you can’t track the person’s availability when there is an emergency situation to contact.

2. Message Read Notification

WhatsApp will show the send and read notification with single and double tick marks against each message. This will help you to understand whether the receiver read the message or not. However, WeChat consider this as a privacy feature and does not allow you to track neither message delivery nor read receipt.

3. Message Retention for Logged Out Users

What happens if you have sent a message to the user who is not logged into WeChat account? You will not have any clue as there are no possibilities to see their status, check message delivery and read notification. WeChat’s policy says they will retain the sent messages up to 3 days if the receiver is logged out of their account. After that time all sent messages will be deleted and there will be no trace of them anymore.  

4. Video Record Length and Voice Message Limit

WeChat allows you to record voice messages by tap and holding the speaker icon. But do you know there is a limit of voice message length? Yes, you can record a voice message maximum of 60 seconds. If the time limit exceeds, the recording will be broken in to multiple messages.

Hold to Talk in WeChat
Hold to Talk in WeChat

Similarly, the allowed limit for recording a video is up to 15 seconds.

5. View Old Chat History on New Device

Unlike other messaging apps, WeChat does not store the chat messages in their server. This means, all your chat messages are stored on your phone’s storage. The problem here is that you will see empty chat when you login to WeChat with a different phone. You can’t see the previous chat history automatically showing on new devices. In order to change the phone, you have to manually use the chat migration tool to move entire or partial chat history.

WeChat Backup and Migrate Options
WeChat Backup and Migrate Options

6. No Automatic Backup of Chat History

Due to the same above reason that WeChat does not store messages, there are no scheduled backups available to backup your data in cloud. The only option is to manually backup the chat history to your computer and restore when needed.

7. Cancelling Transactions

WeChat Pay is super useful to pay to vendors, send red packets and send split bills to your friends. You can directly connect the account to your local bank account to send and receive money with ease. However, the biggest risk is that after sending the money, there is no option to cancel or stop the transaction. If you have wrongly sent money to an unknown person, there is no way to stop the transaction. Similarly, if the receiver accepted the money you have no other options to claim your money back.

In case, if the receiver do not accept within 24 hours, the amount will be credited back to your WeChat Pay balance.  

8. Cross Border Remittance

Many users misunderstand WeChat Pay can help you to send money outside China. You can only receive red packet from anyone and keep the money in your balance. Unless, you have a Mainland China debit card connected to your WeChat Pay account, there is no possibility to transfer the amount to any bank account inside or outside China.

Remember, WeChat Pay is also available in few other countries like Malaysia. Similar restrictions may apply and you can’t transfer amount across borders.

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