25 November 2021
UPDATE (November 8th, 2021):
We now have some more details about the Communities feature WhatsApp is working on. As per WABetaInfo, WhatsApp Community will essentially be a bigger group to manage individual groups. These big groups will have squircle icons that will make it easier to differentiate them from groups with circular icons. Community admins will have access to certain tools to better manage all the groups as well as the ability to add and remove them.
It is important to note that the feature is currently under beta testing on both Android and iOS. It will take some time before it becomes available for everyone but an exact timeline is hard to guess.
Original (October 12th, 2021)
WhatsApp is known for working on a number of features at the same time and then moving some of them to the beta testing phase. This is typical behavior for any company looking for ways to make their offering better. It has now been spotted developing a new feature called Community. It was found by XDA folks during the usual APK teardown process of the latest beta build.
As per the report, WhatsApp beta v188.8.131.52 source code has references to the new Community feature. These references are related to various user behavior situations when they will interact with the feature. Some of these are the ability to join a community, using the wrong URL to find a community, joining a community that has ended, joining a community after you have been removed, changing community description, and checking community details.
The publication speculated to be some kind of a social media aspect added to WhatsApp but the reliable tipster @WABetaInfo has claimed otherwise. The tweet mentions that WhatsApp Community is nothing but just a better way of organizing groups. It adds that while more details will be shared late, it is nothing like another Facebook or Twitter.
Someone leaked "Community", under development for WhatsApp. We wanted to wait for some screenshots to introduce it.— WABetaInfo (@WABetaInfo) October 11, 2021
Community is a way for users to organize their WhatsApp groups better. Nothing more, it's not something like Twitter and Facebook. Updates will be following soon...
It seems like Community will allow users to create a single group featuring multiple WhatsApp groups. A particular "community" could be focused on groups related to a common theme. This can be beneficial for those who are part of a number of groups and find it difficult to keep updated with each of them.