Facebook & Instagram Updated With New Messaging Features

New features are rolling out to Facebook Messenger and Instagram DMs that allow users to be more expressive in how they communicate.

The updates range from cosmetic enhancements like new themes, to the ability to respond to messages with a photo or video.

Here’s more about the new messaging features available now on Facebook and Instagram.

New Facebook Messenger Features

Chat Archives

Facebook Messenger users can now clean up their inbox without deleting chats and losing their message history.

A new swipe to archive feature in Messenger lets users keep their inbox tidy while being able to access inactive chats for future reference.

Swiping left on a chat from the Messenger inbox screen will reveal the option to archive it. Tapping on the purple button will send a chat to the new Archived Chats folder.

Users can access the Archived Chats folder by tapping on their profile photo on the Messenger mobile app and selecting Archived Chats. The folder will contain a full list of archived threads.

Tap to Record

Audio messaging enthusiasts can now record messages hands-free in Messenger.

Instead long-pressing the microphone button to record a message, users can tap once to begin recording and tap again to finish the recording.

Facebook says there’s been a 20% increase in audio messaging among US users. This update makes it easier for people to get other things done while recording longer messages.

This feature will be coming to Instagram soon, but for now it’s exclusive to Messenger.

New Themes

Messenger users have more options to personalize their conversations with the addition of new themes.

From the chat themes menu users can select either the new Star Wars theme or Netflix’s Selena: The Series theme.

These themes are available for Instagram DMs as well.

Celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

Facebook has added new camera stickers in Messenger and Messenger Kids celebrating the diversity and impact of Asian and Pacific Islanders (API).

Users can select one of four Messenger camera stickers to support and raise awareness of key issues important to the API community.

New Instagram DM Features

Visual Replies

Instagram has added the ability to send visual replies to direct messages on iOS (coming to Android soon).

This feature allows users to respond to a photo or video with one of their own.

When a message containing a photo or video is received, tap the camera icon to capture a photo or video to reply with, or to upload media from the device’s camera roll.

Inbox Seen States

A slight update to the Instagram DMs inbox makes it easier for users to see when a recipient has viewed their message.

Users can now find out when a message has been read by checking their inbox. A text snippet will confirm the message has been seen.

This information was previously available to Instagram users, but it required opening the window. It’s a small but welcome quality of life improvement.

Source: Facebook Newsroom