Message Sent, delivered, read: A brief guide to understanding Whatsapp message delivery signs

Have you wondered what those Whatsapp delivery check marks that appear next to your Whatsapp messages mean?  Founded in 2009, Whatsapp has grown to more than 600 million users of which 320 million are active each day. On average a whooping 19 billion Whatsapp messages are sent and 34 billion received on a daily basis. Isn’t that mind blowing?

Whatsapp set out as a simple messaging service for feature phones and smartphones alike with the sole intention of replacing the good old SMS. The service uses your data service to send messages unlike SMS which uses your network’s conventional GSM channel that also routes your calls. That said, if you don’t have data on your phone, you can’t send or receive Whatsapp messages.

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Therefore those delivery check marks are in part representative of your data connection status. Now lets dive into what each one of them means. Here is what each one indicates:

  • #1. message successfully sent.
  • #2.   message successfully delivered to the recipient’s phone.
  • #3.  the recipient has read your message.

#1. Single check mark

The single check mark means that your message has been successfully sent. Where? The message has left your phone and has successfully arrived on Whatsapp servers but hasn’t yet reached the recipient. For this happen, you must have an active data connection or plan.

If you don’t have data, the messages will remain on your phone and won’t go anywhere. When that happens, Whatsapp shows a grey clock icon to mean message hasn’t been sent anywhere. Therefore check if you still have data on your line or if you are connected to a Wi-Fi hotspot.

#2. Grey Double check marks

When you see grey double check marks, it means the recipient has received the message. Your Whatsapp text has left the Whatsapp servers and has been forwarded to the intended recipient. If the recipient hasn’t received the message, you’ll continue to see single check marks. There may be several reasons why your message has been sent (to Whatsapp servers), but not delivered to your chat partner:

  • Their phone might be off.
  • They could be sleeping, especially if they live in a different time zone.
  • They might be experiencing network connection issues.
  • They might have seen the notification on their screen, but did not launch the app (especially common if the recipient uses an iPhone).
  • They might have blocked you

#3. Blue Double check marks

This is the most recent addition to Whatsapp message delivery indicators. The message last week made it possible for you to know when the recipient has not just received the message, but also read it. So when the recipient opens their phone and reads your Whatsapp message, the grey double checks will turn blue.

So there you have it. Three Whatsapp message delivery indicators and what they mean.

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2 thoughts on “Message Sent, delivered, read: A brief guide to understanding Whatsapp message delivery signs

  1. How it is possible that 19 billion sent but 34 billion received? I mean the no. of received messages must be less than or equal to no. of sent messages.

    • One message could be sent to multiple recipients…especially in a group chat!…so the number of message recipients will be far greater than the number of senders.

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