Dubbed Instant Video, the new feature is available to anyone using the latest versions of iOS or Android.
“With Instant Video, you can bring your conversations to life in the most authentic way — seamlessly and instantly,” reads a Facebook blog post.
“It’s perfect for sharing quick moments with friends who aren’t right by your side or making your conversations richer by seeing each other face-to-face when you are messaging. Sometimes you want to ask a friend’s opinion on a pair of shoes you want to buy, weigh in on what ice cream flavor they should bring home, or just want to see your BFF’s reaction to your witty message when you’re in a place where you can’t actually talk live.”
To use Instant Video, both you and the recipient must be viewing an open Messenger conversation. Then, simply tap on the video icon in the top righthand corner of the screen to send a real-time video.
Facebook has set audio off by default “because sometimes you just need to see something, not hear it,” but the sound can easily be switched on.
The video will “float” over the Messenger conversation so you can continue to chat via text and watch the video at the same time.
Instant Video is just the latest in a string of updates and improvements the social networking firm has launched to promote video use. As video views continue to grow on Facebook, the company has continually found new ways to incorporate it into its platform.