March 13, 2017
Messenger has joined Instagram and WhatsApp in emulating Snapchat’s popular Stories concept. Messenger Day is a new feature within the Facebook Messenger app that encourages users to share a daily photo story. Users can post photos and 15-second videos taken with the Messenger camera or images and GIFs saved on their smartphone. The Messenger Day story is visible to all Facebook friends, but it disappears after 24 hours. Facebook’s unique special filters for the images are designed to spark conversations and encourage meet-ups.
The Messenger Day feature appears above conversation threads in the Messenger app, similar to the way Instagram stories are displayed. The Days will play consecutively in reverse chronological order, and users can tap to skip or rewind, and hold to pause.
Right now, there is no advertising within Messenger Day, but the automatic advance gives Facebook the opportunity to easily put advertising between Days. Facebook also allows users to send their photo stories through a direct message, post publicly to their Facebook friends on Messenger Day, or share with a specific list of people.
Messenger Day is unique in that it is focused on fostering conversations that lead to meet-ups. Users will be able to see a little green dot on the Messenger Days of friends that are online and ready for a chat. Facebook also created filters that include ideas for hangouts, including “Who’s up for grabbing coffee?” and “Let’s go for a run.”
Because these images will disappear and all Messenger Day replies are private, users don’t have to worry about appearing lonely on social media. In addition to the call-to-action filters, users can also personalize their stories with drawings, captions, animated selfie filters, stickers, and more.
The launch of Messenger Day puts another Facebook property in direct competition with Snapchat. Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp have also introduced features similar to Snapchat story. These apps threaten Snapchat’s growth, which has just gone public.
Investors are worried that Snapchat will have a difficult time raising adoption rates in other countries where WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger are more popular, reports TechCrunch. Facebook Messenger is now one of the largest of the apps offering a photo story feature; it has more than a billion users worldwide.