Apple has reportedly designed a workable system to let people edit text messages after they send them.
At the end of December, Apple filed an application for Devices, Methods, and Graphical User Interfaces for Messaging with the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, reads an AppleInsider report. It was published on Thursday, revealing a method to edit a text message after sending it.
“The first message can be edited, despite the fact that it has already been sent,” reads the patent application. “To initiate the editing of the first message, the user selects the first message with a predefined touch input (e.g., a tap gesture, long press gesture, light press gesture, or deep press gesture) on the first message or the message region for the first message.”
Going by the mocked-up images provided by Apple, users will see an “Edited” notification beneath the message, after the action has been carried out. Long pressing would now reveal the ability to Show Edits, but it’s not clear whether that feature would be available to all participants in the conversation, or just the sender.
If everyone can see, then the feature would be useful for correcting typos. However, it would probably make matters worse if the sender was trying to correct poorly-chosen words within the edit.
Either way, the ability to edit messages is a long desired feature for users of many apps and social media platforms. WhatsApp allows for the deletion of messages, albeit with a notification that the message has been deleted.
The patent application goes on to show that current apps also lack quickly locating content inside a messaging thread, camera integration, sharing content, and built-in interactive apps. It also talks about stickers, mobile payments, suggestions, interaction with virtual avatars, foreign language translation, message flagging, and combining messages into a group.