As a direct response to Google Duo, Facebook came with a different approach to video calls. The new feature that was introduced in the new update for iOS and Android allows users to tap the video calling icon from the top corner of an active conversation and start sharing video instantly. However, audio will be off by default.
Facebook Messenger supports “Instant Video”, and the new functionality is now rolling out to users who install the latest update of the application on their iOS or Android devices. Support for video messaging was necessary and from now on, more users who want to see the faces of their loved ones will watch a video that will float on top of their text conversation, and they will be able to text in the same time. There’s a difference when it comes to the existing video-sharing feature, as the other user won’t send video back if he/she doesn’t want to.
In order to take advantage of the Instant Video functionality, both users will need to install the latest build of Facebook Messenger. Then, they will tap the camera icon that sits next to the VoIP call icon from the top right corner of the screen, where they usually initiated a normal video call. But now, they will see the video in a floating video, on top of their conversation and it won’t prevent users from texting.
Facebook has added a FaceTime-like video chat option back in May 2015 and this new functionality is encouraging more users to make video calls. “Video calling is still relatively new, and until recently, reserved for special occasions,” said Facebook, adding that “Instant video is a reflection of the ubiquity of video — we simply expect to have that ability in real-time, all the time.” Facebook Messenger is used by 1 billion people every day, but it’s not sure how many of them are making traditional video calls on iOS or Android devices.
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