Truly private conversations are about to get way better on Messenger.
Today, Meta announced a slew of features that it will be adding to end-to-end encrypted conversations on Messenger, the company’s messaging platform that it used across its products like Facebook and Instagram.
Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg took to Facebook to announce the move, saying that the company was “launching more features for end-to-end encrypted chats for Messenger today – link previews, custom emojis, themes, etc. We’re ramping up testing default end-to-end encryption for more people in Messenger too.”
The upgrade includes themes, custom emojis, and link previews. You can check out the entire list of features being added to end-to-end encrypted conversations in Messenger below:
- Chat themes: We’ve added chat themes to help personalize and enhance your conversations in end-to-end encrypted chats. Tired of a plain background? Can’t wait to show your Swiftie credentials with the Midnights theme? Now you can set themes, including static color and gradient themes, for end-to-end encrypted chats.
- Custom chat emojis and reactions: Want to personalize your response? You can see the full menu of emoji reactions and customize the quick reaction tray in end-to-end encrypted chats.
- Group profile photos: Choose group profile photos for different chats with friends or work colleagues.
- Link previews: We’ve rebuilt link previews for end-to-end encrypted chats so that you can see where a link is taking you, before clicking on it.
- Active Status: Let people see when you’re active, so they know when it’s a good time to call. You can also choose to turn this feature off, if you want to improve your privacy.
- Bubbles on Android: Bubbles (a circle with your friend’s picture) let you read and reply to messages while you’re using other apps. Once enabled, a bubble will appear when you get a new message.
Meta says that it is planning to eventually make end-to-end encryption the default chat experience on Messenger, catching up to rivals like Apple’s iMessage. It also revealed that it will upgrading some existing conversations to being end-to-end encrypted. Which existing conversations will get that upgrade? The company says that “we wanted to make clear that this is a random process.” According to Meta, it plans to randomly upgrade existing conversations to end-to-end encryption “in the coming months.”
Today’s announcement comes a few days after the company launched Quiet Mode on Instagram and a couple of weeks after it started to further limit advertisers’ ability to target teens.