One of Gmail’s best features is the ability to unsend emails. Made a mistake? No problem, you’ve got a few seconds to undo it and make sure to fix any mistakes before you finally fire it off. That’s a feature mobile chat apps could certainly use, given that texting plays an even more important part in our lives than email these days. Facebook is about to bring similar unsend functionality to its Messenger application, now that its WhatsApp mobile chat app has it.
As is the case with WhatsApp, time limits will be involved, meaning you won’t be able to remove any of the things you said in past chats. With WhatsApp, you have one hour to delete mistaken replies, which might come in handy. Messenger isn’t as forgiving, though. It’ll only let you unsend messages for up to 10 minutes after you first send them. In other words, it probably won’t prevent you from drunk texting your ex.
If you’re too drunk to realize you’re sending messages to someone late at night, you’re probably too drunk to remember you have 10 minutes to delete them. But it may prevent other unwanted accidents, like sending the wrong reply to someone. Of course, if the recipient does see the chat when it arrives, deleting it obviously isn’t going to fix the situation.
Facebook didn’t announce the feature yet, but The Verge spotted it in the “coming soon” section of the release notes from Messenger for iPhone version 191.0. But we do know the feature has been in the works since back in April, having been first spotted in testing last month. It’s unclear at this time whether the feature will work both on mobile and on desktop, but it would make sense for Facebook to offer the same messaging experience across platforms.