Facebook Messenger Has A New Video Feature

Facebook Messenger has been around for years, but now it's getting an awesome update: Facebook Messenger Instant Video offers options beyond the video chat features already available. So go forth and use this information however you want.

Facebook Messenger has gotten a lot of updates in over the past few years, from adding emoji to letting you send people money to introducing a game where you can play soccer. And just this summer, it also completely changed the way the inbox is set up. They've also used a FaceTime-like video chat feature since 2015 — and now they're introducing one more revolutionary video feature: Instant Video.

It's super easy to use: If both parties in a Facebook Messenger chat are viewing the chat at the same time, the video option will flash, which means that the participants can open Instant Video. From there, you can send send a live video to your friend, who can then choose to just watch, or to send a video back.

"Instant Video allows you to share regular parts of everyday life with the people you care about most," a post introducing the service on the Facebook Messenger Facebook page explains. "Sometimes you just want to ask a friend's opinion on a pair of shoes you want to buy, weigh in on what ice cream flavor they should bring home, or see their reaction to your witty message, when you're in a place where you can't talk live (like a meeting — don't tell anyone!)"

Curious about what all that looks in action? Messenger has helpfully provided some screenshots demonstrating how Instant Video works. Here's what you'll see when Instant Video is available to use:

Here's what your friend sees:

And here's what it looks like when your friend shares a video back:

Facebook seems to be trying to keep up with other video-sharing social media features, like Snapchat's video capabilities, but Instant Video has the advantage of being part of a larger conversation — and one that won't vanish on you. Which is a good option to have.

The feature is available on the Messenger on the latest version for iOS and Android.

So get video messaging, kids!

Images: Fotolia; Messenger/Facebook (3)