Star Wars and Selena Chat Themes, Visual Replies in Instagram, Swipe to Archive

People are relying on Messenger more than ever to stay connected with friends and family. Our team has been focused on creating experiences that help people feel together —  even when they’re apart. Today, we’re excited to share a roundup of new features and recent updates that help you better express yourself, find what you need and stay connected. 

New Chat Themes: Star Wars and Selena: The Series

Fans of Star Wars and Netflix’s Selena: The Series, rejoice! We recently introduced new chat themes to help you celebrate your favorite series and personalize your conversations. You can now chat in the darkness of deep space, or immerse yourself in the purple blooms of Selena’s legacy. 

To activate the Star Wars or Selena: The Series chat theme in Messenger and Instagram, access your chat settings and tap “Theme.” 

Celebrating Asian Pacific American Heritage Month

We’ve introduced new camera stickers on Messenger and Messenger Kids celebrating the diversity and impact of Asian and Pacific Islanders (API). You can use one of four Messenger camera stickers to support and raise awareness of key issues important to the API community. 

Kids can explore the richness and diversity of unique traditions, histories and cultures across Asian and Pacific Islander countries through a series of Messenger Kids camera stickers. We even created an easy sticker reference guide to help parents have more in-depth conversations with their kids around API cultures.

Better Ways to Express Yourself

Instagram is a visual-first platform. Recognizing that, we’ve added the ability to send a visual reply in Instagram DMs on iOS to content with another photo or video of your choice (Android coming soon!). Simply tap the camera icon to respond with a photo or video of your own 🤩. 

If you’re an audio messaging fan (there’s been a 20 percent uptick in the US), we’re making it easier to go hands-free with tap-to-record on Messenger (Instagram coming soon)! Now, you no longer need to hold down the mic — tap-to-record allows you to craft the perfect audio message while you’re doing other things and makes it a more accessible feature (in addition to reducing global finger cramp incidents 🙌). 

Better Ways to Feel Present

There’s nothing more anxiety-inducing than waiting to see if your messages have been read. On Instagram, you now have the ability to see if your friends have seen your messages with the inbox seen states feature. After sending a message, look out for a text snippet confirming that your friend has 👀 it.

Better Ways to Find What You Need

Finally, we know how important it is for our users to keep a clean inbox. Most people want to archive inactive threads to keep their chats tidy, while allowing access to them for future reference. With this in mind, we’ve introduced swipe to archive in Messenger for speedy inbox upkeep and a new Archived Chats folder on mobile to allow people to more easily dust off old chats. Instead of having to manually search for archived conversations on your phone, just tap your profile photo and select “Archived Chats” for a full list of archived threads. 

That’s it for now – stay tuned for more fun features and updates coming soon!

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