Messenger Rooms, Facebook’s Zoom competitor, is rolling out new features that are designed to improve Rooms’ experience for users. The latest update allows users to create, manage, and edit their virtual hangouts. A new dedicated section on top of the chat UI will allow users to instantly ‘Create a Room’, share theirs, and discover previously joined Rooms on the Messenger app.
Facebook debuted Messenger Rooms in April, after videoconferencing became the norm for socializing for people around the globe due to the coronavirus pandemic. Messenger Rooms allows users to host virtual hangouts with up to 50 participants who are invited to join via a link.
Messenger Rooms’ New Features
The most attractive feature in the new update is the ability to add custom backgrounds to personalize created rooms. Users will now be able to decorate the backgrounds with their photos and videos, in addition to the previously offered options to use 360-degree backgrounds, AR, and mood lighting filters.
Other changes in the video calling service are designed for Rooms management. Users can now create a room with a default, suggested or custom activity, set a future start date, and customize their audience selection with Edit Rooms. Furthermore, invitations to join a room will now show up at the top of the Chats tab in Messenger’s inbox.
Additionally, the Manage Rooms feature will allow users to view, join, and edit the rooms they have created. Users can also delete any chosen room, or they can invite more people to join an existing room. Furthermore, the ability to Create Rooms with now be prominently displayed in the Chats tab. Lastly, the option to Share Rooms will make it easier for users to send a notification to a friend to remind them of their invite to join a room.
Though Rooms has not had a lot of success since its release, it is true that people are looking for new ways to stay connected during COVID-19 pandemic, and Rooms being integrated with Messenger will definitely give the feature a wider user-base than apps like Houseparty, which requires users to download an entirely separate app for Room-like features.
Additionally, with the new features being rolled out soon to Messenger, it may make Rooms easier to navigate and therefore lead to better user experience.