Not only is Facebook one of the most popular social media platforms available, but their Messenger platform is also one of the most popular messaging services available. However, you might have noticed that it hasn’t always been the easiest to use.
Regular users and marketers alike have complained about the usability of Facebook Messenger, and Facebook has been listening. Recently, Facebook announced a brand new version of the Messenger app that promises to be a lot simpler than previous offerings.
In this article, I’ll be exploring Facebook’s newly designed, easy-to-use customization of Messenger 4 and the benefits it will offer its users. With this new version, users will find Messenger less cluttered and more user-friendly with all of the functionality they’ve enjoyed so far.
What’s in the Messenger 4 Chat Update
New Features and Less Clutter
In a recent study conducted by Messenger, 7 out of 10 (71%) users told Facebook that the top priority for them in a messaging app is simplicity. Facebook is trying to meet this demand with a more user friendly, refreshed, and simplified design.
The revamp simplifies the experience mainly by removing the clutter that users have complained about in the past. This means that Messenger 4 has not only simplified its navigation, but it has also redesigned the entire bottom tab menu.
Additionally, Messenger 4 makes navigating the app much easier. For example, instead of having to tap several times to send a photo or start a video call, you can now swipe on your friend’s name on the Chats tab to access those features right from the home screen. Or, if you prefer, you can access the camera and video features in the compose window directly.
The updated version of the app also places those icons towards the upper right of the Chats tab to de-clutter the experience. Within the chats, each conversation now has little contextual icons that tell you whether there’s a game or video call going on.
There has also been a big switch up with the tabs. Groups is no longer an explicit tab in Messenger, mostly because Facebook discovered that people tended to build out a group conversation from one person to many, rather than going to the Groups tab directly.
Marketers will be happy to know that, just as on Instagram, Facebook Stories continues to be a big focus for the platform—and with good reason, as 300 million people use Stories every day. You will be able to access them from both the Chat and People tab. In Chat, they’re represented by small circles and in People, they appear as larger tiles.
Three Easy Tabs
One of the biggest differences with Messenger 4, is that you’ll get three tabs instead of nine. The three new tabs include:
- The Chats tab, which houses all of your conversations
- The People tab, where you can see who’s online
- The Discover tab, which is focused more on connecting you with businesses
The discover tab will give you access to the platform’s Instant Games feature as well, turning the two separate tabs for Discover and Games into one tab.
With the new tabs you will be able to:
As all of your conversations are stored under this tab, you will be able to see both one-to-one conversations and groups front and center. You will also be able to tell whether a game or video call is going on, and each conversation will have a little contextual icon.
This is where you can see who is online. You can find friend, watch and catch up on your contacts’ Stories, and see everyone else who is active on the app.
This tab is focused on connecting users with businesses. You can get the latest deals, play Instant Games, book your next vacation, follow the news, and much more.
Powerful New Ways to Personalize Conversations
The new version of Messenger is giving users the opportunity to add their own unique spin to the app. Users will be able to customize conversations in Messenger 4 by using custom nicknames, emojis, and chat colors.
Messenger is also introducing a new color gradients feature as a way to allow users to personalize their conversations and customize your chat bubbles. For example, you can have the colors change from yellow to blue as you scroll up and down your discussion.
Same Features You Know and Love
Facebook is being careful to hold onto all of the features that users favor the most. Users will still be able to access all of the features that help them connect with the people and business they care most about.
Whether you want to poll friends on which movie you should see, split the bill for last night’s dinner, share your live location to find friends at a music festival, challenge your friends to your favorite games, or catch up in a group video chat, you can still do all of those things!
When to Expect New Updates
Facebook has announced that they will be rolling out the new Messenger 4 update in 4 phases. The first phase of the new Facebook Messenger was rolled out to users on October 23, 2018, and Facebook has already hinted at more updates to come.
In fact, Facebook has already teased an upcoming Dark Mode feature, which reverts the UI from black on white, to white on black. The feature will allow a re-skinned interface that will help cut down on the glare from the users’ phone. Facebook has hinted that it will be introduced in the near future.
Though Facebook has had a tough year so far, they are showing that they are listening to users when it comes to their preferences for Facebook Messenger. The company has realized that in order for their popular message app to grow, they had to give it a new look and feel while still maintaining all of the features that users love!
Facebook has made these changes based on research from users who use the Messenger app to connect with family, friends, and business contacts, ensuring that the update will be well-received.
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