As lockdown rules continue in the UK, staying connected with family and friends remotely is key to keeping sane during isolation - especially for those isolating alone.
Here to help keep communication alive and fun during this difficult time is WhatsApp, with 21 new lockdown-themed stickers you can download now.
Here’s what you need to know.
What are the new stickers?
These new stickers from WhatsApp have been introduced to keep people connected whilst also remaining isolated.
WhatsApp wrote on their official blog: “We hope people enjoy using these stickers to check-in on loved ones, particularly those feeling isolated, alone and scared.
“This pack offers creative ways to remind people to wash their hands, maintain distance, exercise, and importantly celebrate medical heroes as well as the personal heroes in all of our lives.”
The sticker pack contains illustrations showcasing life in isolation, including:
- Two friends high fiving without touching with the caption “air high five”
- A phone having a video call with four friends
- A person doing yoga with their dog
- A hand holding a smiling bar of soap
- A medical professional wearing blue scrubs, a stethoscope, a facemask and a superhero cape
How do I access them?
To find the stickers on your phone, go to the WhatsApp app on your device and enter a conversation thread you have with someone, or even start a new one.
Then, in the space where you compose your message, you should see an outline of a smiley face emoji. Tap the smiley face and at the bottom of the screen you should see three icons - a smiley face (for normal emojis), a square with the word GIF in it (for GIFs) and then at the right, a square with the bottom right hand corner folded upwards.
Click the square with the folded area and you’ll be taken to the stickers section. In here, you should see a plus icon with a green notification dot on the upper right hand corner of your keyboard.
Tap the plus icon and you’ll then be presented with all the sticker packs that WhatsApp has to offer - at the very top, you should see the ‘Together at Home’ pack, which will have a ‘new’ notification on it. Tap the download button next to it to download the pack to your phone.
When you go back into the sticker section, you should then see the pack available to use in your messages to family and friends.
Why has WhatsApp launched this pack?
Writing on their blog, WhatsApp said: “Since we launched stickers 18 months ago, they have become one of the fastest growing ways people communicate on WhatsApp.”
Digital communication lends itself to fun new ways to talk with your family and friends beyond simple text messages - they say a picture says a thousand words and the likes of stickers and emojis can effectively portray tone and emotion in a way that standard text messaging can’t do.
“We’re excited to work with The World Health Organisation to launch the “Together at Home” sticker pack that will help people stay connected throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.
“Stickers like these can be funny, educational and universal, breaking through language, age, and other barriers,” WhatsApp explained.