Afraid of bill shock? Facebook Messenger is notoriously data-hungry. Thankfully, future versions will allow you to put it on a diet, courtesy of a brand new Data Saver feature.
Facebook is currently trialling this on the Android beta version of the app. It works by changing how the app downloads any media content the user receives, such as photographs and videos.
Here’s how it works. Without the Data Saver mode active, Messenger automatically downloads anything the user receives. This happens regardless of the size of the content, or whether the user actually wants to see it.
But when the user switches on this feature, they have to tap-to-select each individual photograph and video they wish to view. As you might expect, ordinary text messages are unaffected by this.
The beta also comes with a counter, which shows the user how much data it has saved. This can be reset as required, which should be helpful to those on a rolling monthly data plan.
It’s also worth pointing out that Data Saver only works when the device is using cellular data. When it connects to a Wi-Fi hotspot, Messenger reverts back to normal.
You can expect Data Saver to show up in the mainstream branch of Facebook Messenger pretty soon. But if you can’t wait, you can sign up to the beta through the Google Play store.