Facebook Messenger surprised users this morning with a new feature; cross-app group chats. Just last year, the tech giant introduced cross-app messaging between Messenger and Instagram. However, the feature is being upgraded to allow users to start group chats while having the leverage to add Instagram and Messenger contacts.
Additional features have also been upgraded, including polls in Instagram DMs, which build off an existing feature in Messenger.
Facebook Messenger is also including the “typing” status during chats, which will help users tell when someone is typing a message or not.
“Plus, as Instagram embraces video content, users will now be able to use Messenger’s existing Watch Together feature to view Instagram posts like Reels and IGTV videos at the same time,” according to TechCrunch.
Messenger also didn’t leave out behind the creative users who would like to have the ability to customize chats. More surprisingly, the messaging giant also kept in mind astronomy enthusiasts.
“Now, there’s a cottage core chat theme, as well as an astrology-themed suite of chat themes, stickers and Instagram AR filters. Because what do the teens love more than cottage core and star charts?” TechCrunch added.
Interestingly enough, these features were introduced mere hours before Facebook are set to testify before the Senate about the mental health issues caused by Instagram and its parent company.
While these additions seem like a great upgrade to the social media platforms, it has more to do with politics than entertainment.
As Facebook faces a lawsuit from the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), which cites that Facebook is a monopoly that should be broken down, the tech giant is trying to convince legal officers that individual products under the Facebook group are dependent on one another.
This reasoning could allow the company to use this argument as a justification for its competitive atmosphere, noting that the apps that fall under the Facebook umbrella cannot be separated.
A Facebook spokesperson also told TechCrunch last month during its 10th anniversary, that the firm perceives Messenger as a “connective tissue regardless of the surface.”