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Facebook combines Messenger, Instagram DMs in cross-platform chat feature

By Argie Aguja Published Nov 02, 2020 3:14 am

Facebook Messenger and Instagram’s direct messaging services are now integrated into one system, with the cross-platform update arriving to users in the Philippines last week.

New features

Aside from combining chats from both Instagram and Messenger, the new update also brings in features from Facebook Messenger into Instagram like video calls, and the use of a range of tools drawn from both platforms.

For example, the latest update changes the colors of the chatbox in the Instagram's DMs and allows users to react using emojis, create selfie stickers, and other Messenger features. The Messenger app will now take up the display picture and name from Instagram when setting up for the first time.

How to enable

In case you haven’t seen the cross-functionality of the app, enable it by following these simple steps.

For Instagram:

  1. From the right-hand side, go to Settings
  2. Select the Privacy option
  3. Tap on the Messages option and adjust the settings from here to either receive chats directly, or if you want (or don’t) to receive requests.
  4. You can opt to receive or don’t receive requests for these categories:
  • Facebook friends or people you’ve chatted with on Messenger.
  • People with your phone number.
  • Others on Facebook.

For Messenger:

  1. Open Messenger
  2. Go to Privacy and select Message Delivery
  3. Under Potential Connections, select from Your followers on Instagram 
  4. Select Chats under the Deliver Requests To option.

Also, you can choose whether to receive message requests or not.

Unified messaging experience 

In March last year, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg revealed plans to integrate Messenger, Instagram Direct and WhatsApp into a “unified messaging experience” by 2020. The end goal of which was to administer end-to-end encryption across the whole messaging ecosystem, in response to privacy concerns from users.

“More than a billion people already use Messenger as a place to share, hang out and express themselves with family and friends. That’s why we’re connecting the Messenger and Instagram experience to bring some of the best Messenger features to Instagram – so you have access to the best messaging experience, no matter which app you use.” Instagram said in an announcement.

The cross-platform chat support for Messenger and Instagram is currently being rolled out gradually across countries and, for now, is optional for users.