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Cross-app messaging systems on Facebook and Instagram merge

Yes, you’ve read that right. Facebook Messenger and Instagram Direct Message has begun merging and in case it hasn’t fully sunk in yet what this new feature could mean for me and you, it’s this: even if you’re just on the Instagram app, you’ll be able to exchange chats and calls using the Direct Message feature of your app with someone who’s just on Messenger. And this convenient feature will work vice versa.

From FB

According to Facebook, the goal is to make the messaging experience in their family of apps as seamless as possible for their hundreds of millions of users.

In an official statement shared on September 30, Facebook said “Four out of five people who use messaging apps in the US say that spending more time connecting with friends and family on these apps is important to them, yet one out of three people sometimes find it difficult to remember where to find a certain conversation thread.”

“With this update, it will be even easier to stay connected without thinking about which app to use to reach your friends and family,” added Facebook.

So whether you’re a Facebook-only or an Instagram-only kind of social media user, it means you’ll now be able to chat with family, friends, and colleagues who are on the other side of the spectrum without having to download or sign up on multiple platforms.

But apart from the merging of the messaging apps, a number of exciting features from the Facebook Messenger will also be made available on the Instagram Direct Message.

These features will include:

  • Watch Together — A feature that allows users to join or to host their own video viewing parties through video calls. Movie nights with friends are now possible even as you stay at home.
  • Custom Emoji Reactions — A feature that conveniently enables users to create a shortcut of their most used emojis. No more need to browse through all those emojis before you can react to a conversation.
  • Chat Themes and Colors — A feature that allows users to customize their chats with fun color gradients.
  • Vanish Mode — A feature that enables messages to disappear once they’ve been seen or when the chat has been closed. (We’re really looking forward to this one.)
  • Selfie Stickers — A feature that allows users to create stickers using their own boomerang selfies.
  • Animated Message Effects — A feature that allows users to add creative send effects to their messages.
  • Message Replies and Forwarding — A feature that allows users to reply to a specific chat in a thread and to forward messages from one chat to another.
  • Message Controls — A feature that gives users more control over their privacy on the messaging app, enabling them to choose who can send them messages and who can’t.
  • Enhanced Reporting and Blocking Updates — A feature that allows users to report full conversations and to block “unwanted messages and calls” across apps.

Now in case you’re wondering why you’re not seeing any of these features on your up-to-date apps yet, Facebook says everything will roll out on select countries first before they expand globally. So we might have to wait a little before we can enjoy these convenient features one hundred percent. Good for you, though, if you are able to use the new features already.

But while we do wait for the updates, what do you think about these new features from Facebook? Let us know in the comments if it’s a nay or yay for you.


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