First, the Snapchat update threw the Internet into a weeks-long, rainbow-puking tizzy, and now we're about to learn how to make your Facebook profile picture a GIF. What gives? Are tech companies trying to break the Internet's collective, squirrelly mind? Is some kind of technological Robin Hood somehow convincing social media CEOs across the web to keep giving us fun new features? Are fictional government officials trying to keep us distracted while they're off discovering portals to Asgard? I'd like to get in on that last one, especially if Heimdall really does look like Idris Elba.
I guess we'll never know the truth, though, so we might as well embrace the updates while we can. According to Tech Crunch, Facebook announced five new changes to its profiles today, ranging from a Featured Photos option to temporary profile pictures. But all that pales in comparison, of course, to the feature allowing you to upload a seven-second looping video, as your profile picture. Unlike Snapchat's profile GIFs, the Facebook option allows for sound, because they're not actually GIFs. They're videos — although fortunately, they won't make any noise until you click on them.
Wired reports that the feature is still being tested on a select few iPhone users in the UK and California, so alas, I was unable to give it a whirl myself. But if you're wondering exactly how you'll be able to GIF your profile pic if and when the feature is rolled out across the entire platform, here's what we know about it so far:
1. Make Sure You Have The Facebook App
A Facebook representative told Wired that they wouldn't ignore web users, but the new stuff is currently being tested on the mobile crowd. "We’re initially testing the profile video upload flow on iOS," they explained.
2. Click On Your Current Profile Picture
Just like static photos, click on your current profile picture to upload a new one.
3. Hit "Record"
According to Tech Crunch, the update will include a "record" button that starts, well, recording.
4. Get Creative!
You have seven seconds of recording time, so go crazy! Pretend you're Sirius Black in his Prisoner of Azkaban mugshot. Act like you're going down stairs. Give your best Robert DeNiro smirk. The options are truly endless, and once you've captured your essence in seven seconds or less, you'll be able to choose it as your profile picture.
Again, the update is still being tested, so it might be a while before the rest of us get to catch up with the Chosen Ones, aka beta testers. On the bright side, that just means you have more time to plan your inaugural video, which obviously has to be genius.
Check out Tech Crunch's explanation of the new update below: