Today Facebook has announced a bunch of new ways to add a bit more fun to video messaging via its Messenger platform. You can now add animated emojis which augment your own reactions in real time, overlay a variety of filters to jazz up your video feed, and take advantage of some new mask options. And if any of those new features result in an image you'd love to save, you can even capture screenshots from video chats directly from the application.
So far Facebook has shown off five animated emoji for Messenger: love, laughing, surprised, sad, and angry. Each of the new emoji is able to identify and track your face so that the animation follows it. And, it even shows a different animation based on whether your face is present or not.
The new filters are straightforward for anyone that has used an app like Instagram. They tweak the colors in an image, sometimes a little, sometimes a lot, for stylistic effect. I don't think they're the sort of thing I'd ever use in a conversation, but others might appreciate having a sepia-toned conversation.
Masks aren't a new feature in Messenger, but Facebook is introducing a bunch of new ones. Some of them have hidden effects that are only triggered if it detects that you are performing a particular action, sort of like Snapchat. For instance, the rabbit mask throws a carrot at your mouth if it is opened. Some of the masks are just animated filters, though, like the stars one pictured above. But even those have additional animated effects based on actions.
Last among the new features is the ability to save screenshots directly from the app itself. Now you'll have an extra button at the bottom during a video chat, and when tapped it'll capture an image, and offer to send it to others in the chat.
If you're a big user of Messenger for video chats, I'm sure these new emojis, filters, and masks will come in handy. I've tested them out, and all the features are present in the latest version of the app. So if you'd like to give any of the new stuff a try, you can check it out at Google Play, or over on APK Mirror.