January 15, 2021
Facebook Messenger

Facebook Messenger Testing New Chat UI, Virtual Assistant “M”

Facebook Messenger is now testing with a small number of users, its virtual assistant, “M,” complete with Reactions through its proprietary messaging app…

Facebook has 1.86 billion monthly active users and 1 billion Messenger downloads. The world’s largest social network messaging app holds the #1 position on the “Top Free Apps” chart and it’s using this popularity to test a new feature. “M,” the virtual assistant in development, appears in Messenger, company with emoji and Reactions.

Facebook Messenger Now Testing New Chat UI, Virtual Assistant “M” with Select Users

This introduction follows the news Facebook Reactions now top Likes in algorithm ranking importance. The social network confirmed to TechCrunch it is testing to include Reactions to individual messages. Some users also see the two-blue shaded “M” when receiving messages.

Facebook Messenger UI M
Credit: Facebook / Android Police

Also included is the long-demanded Dislike, a thumbs-down in addition to the Like, Love, HaHa, Wow, Sad, and Angry Reactions. The thumbs-down allows users to reply with a nay vote when planning where to eat, choosing a movie, or other group participation activities. Facebook states it considers the thumbs-down a “no” button, although the company understands it can easily be regarded as a dislike. To-date, Facebook Reactions have more than 300 billion sends since debuting about a year ago.

Users who see the “M” icon also see a small, italic “i” accompanying it. Tapping on it launches an explanation page:

Facebook Messenger M Screenshot
Credit: Facebook / Android Police

The small, experimental roll-out isn’t yet stable, the feature remains in beta at this time. So, it might disappear and/or reappear within messages. Facebook recently integrated TransferWise into its Messenger payment options.

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Owen E. Richason IV

Covers social media, apps, search and like news. History buff, movie and theme park lover. Blessed dad and husband. Owen is also a musician and is the founder of Groove Modes.          

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