Over the years, both Facebook and Facebook Messenger have undergone a lot of changes. For a while, Facebook charged for sending messages to those who weren’t on a member’s friends list, not one of the company’s better ideas. Since then, Facebook has changed the look and feel of its messenger service. Gone are the days of the spam folder and allowing users to move messages into that folder so members who aren’t on a user’s friends list can no longer contact them.
Tech Times reports that Facebook Messenger will soon allow publishers to distribute their content automatically. Facebook will allow publishers to use its messaging app as a way to share stories. Earlier rumors also suggested that Facebook was working on a development kit that would allow developers to create chat bots. Developers testing out the new software also included publishers.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg hinted at the new changes, and they will likely be discussed at Facebook’s F8 developer conference in April. Zuckerberg said that there would be discussions on everything including Facebook Lite, Facebook Business Pages and Android Apps. Other discussions included News Publishers and Readers, WhatsApp, Graph API and Immutable Objects. In addition to the discussions, Zuckerberg will give the keynote address and will discuss how developers can build, grow and monetize their success.
— Forbes (@Forbes) March 4, 2016
As previously reported by Inquisitr, Messenger isn’t the only part of Facebook that Zuckerberg’s team has been making changes to. Testing began on using GIF images in both ads and on timelines last year. Facebook also started testing to allow major publishers a chance to publish and monetize their videos. Only major brands have tested the platform so far, and no word has been given as to when other publishers have the chance to monetize their video promotions.
Developers have been testing various chat bots to perform specific functions. One chat bot that was tested allowed users to request Uber rides using a Facebook Messenger conversation thread. Another chat bot was created of The Muppets’ Miss Piggy character that allows her to engage in conversations and reply to fans. The bot used a special computer algorithm to analyze messages sent by fans and determine the most relevant response to send.
Although Facebook Messenger may provide a chance for publishers to distribute content in the future, publishers are already using other messenger apps to distribute their content. BBC News uses Viber and WhatsApp while The Huffington Post is on Viber. There are other publishers that users can subscribe to based on the messenger service they use and what publishers are already available.
— Jay Baer (@jaybaer) March 4, 2016
The Next Web reported that the Facebook Messenger for Android is also getting a material design makeover. The head of Messenger, David Marcus, took to social media to announce the new changes. They include a floating action button for starting new chats. Although the new design will give Facebook Messenger an all new look, there probably won’t be any new features added. Marcus said the design took some time to create due to the number of users on Facebook.
“Any major redesign of an essential app used by hundreds of millions of people around the world is painstakenly hard, and that’s why we took every precaution to ensure you’d truly enjoy this evolution.”
This is also the first time that Facebook Messenger has gotten a distinct look on any platform. The design philosophy is more in line with the design philosophy at Google, and it looks remarkably similar to what the Google design team has done. The rollout for the new app has already begun although it is unclear as to when it will be completed.
[Photo by Pixabay]