Messenger Rooms: Facebook’s Zoom-like Functionality Explained
This page was translated using AI and machine learning.
(Pocket-lint) – Facebook has bet everything on video conferencing.
The company launched Messenger Rooms, which can join group video calls with up to 50 people. It’s like a virtual hangout where friends can drop by just to say hello. It also added video calling to Facebook Dating, as well as live streaming functionality to Facebook and Instagram.
CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced these features in a live broadcast in April 2020. He said more than 700 million people make calls on Messenger and WhatsApp every day. Thus, Facebook is increasing private communications and trying to help people connect in small groups. Here’s what you need to know about Messenger Rooms and other Facebook video efforts.
What are Messenger rooms?
Facebook has rolled out a video calling feature called Messenger Rooms. It lets you and 49 other people join a group video call, which Facebook calls a “room”. You can start a room from Messenger, Facebook, Instagram Direct, WhatsApp, or Portal, and you can open the call to all or lock it to prevent uninvited people from joining. You can also remove participants.
In a room, you can use Facebook’s augmented reality filters and change your background to a virtual one. Facebook includes 360-degree views of exotic locations for the backgrounds and works on beauty filters as well as filters designed to light up a dark room.
Keep in mind that Zoom, a popular alternative to Facebook, also allows you to join large group video calls and use virtual backgrounds.
How to create a Messenger room
Here’s how to create a room from your phone:
- Open the Messenger mobile app.
- Tap the People tab at the bottom of the screen.
- Tap Create room.
- Select the people you want to reach.
- You can also share the room in your News Feed, Groups, and Events.
- To share a room with people who don’t have Facebook, you can share a link with them.
You can join a room from your phone or computer – there’s no need to download anything.
Are Messenger rooms secure?
Facebook said room calls are not end-to-end encrypted, unlike WhatsApp.
When will the rooms be available?
The Facebook Messenger Rooms feature is now available worldwide in the Facebook Messenger app. Messenger rooms are available on all of the company’s products, including Messenger and Facebook, Instagram Direct, WhatsApp, and Portal.
Facebook Messenger Rooms also offers the option of live streaming.
What else is new on Facebook?
Facebook also announced video updates for the following apps:
Facebook Live is resurrecting a feature called Live With, which allows you to invite another person to broadcast with you. The donate button is also coming to live broadcasts, so you can fundraise through broadcasts during the pandemic. And Facebook adds a virtual date option to Facebook Dating, essentially letting you make a video call with the feature.
Instagram allows users to post live feeds to IGTV and Instagram Stories after finishing the broadcast, and Instagram Live feeds are finally coming to the desktop for the first time.
Finally, the Facebook portal now has the ability to live stream pages and groups.
Why is Facebooking doing this now?
Simply put: Alternatives to Messenger and WhatsApp – including those focused on video calling – are gaining popularity right now. For consumers, there’s Zoom, which now has over 300 million students. And then, for teams or students who use G Suite or Microsoft 365, there is Google Meet and Microsoft Teams respectively. The point is, Facebook has fierce competition.
Best Android Apps 2021: The Ultimate Guide
If it wants to keep consumers hooked on its applications and services, it must be agile and innovative, especially in times of crisis. Facebook is clearly paying attention to consumers, trends and global events, and it is responding impressively. It’s no coincidence that Messenger Rooms and these other video features are coming at a time when many need them the most.
Written by Maggie Tillman. Edited by Alex Allegro. Originally published on .