Facebook seems to announce a new product or capability every week nowadays. In the latest development, the world’s leading social network is said to be taking a page from Snapchat as it tests disappearing messages in its Messenger app, in hopes of building engagement among users worried about privacy.
The potential new feature has yet to be confirmed by Facebook, but was first reported by Twitter account @iOSAppChanges and subsequently publicized by VentureBeat, citing screenshots showing examples of the disappearing messages within the Messenger app for iOS. As depicted in these images, the feature allows users to set a time limit for how long they want the message to be visible to other users in Messenger.
Disappearing messages would build on a number of other new security features introduced by Facebook in recent weeks, including default encryption for WhatsApp, the messaging platform popular in Europe and acquired by Facebook in 2014. Facebook is also said to be considering introducing “secret conversations” for Messenger, with end-to-end encryption.
As noted, Facebook has introduced a raft of new messaging features in recent months. Among other things, it’s rolling out several new features, including Links and Codes, which are simple ways for people to begin conversations with other people and businesses.
In conjunction with this, Facebook is said to be exploring new features that allow users to buy products or services through Messenger while chatting with a business or possibly even in a retail establishment, presumably using an extended version of an online peer-to-peer payment system introduced last year.
Facebook also recently revealed plans to prominently place a video tab in the Messenger app.