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  • MaryGrace Lerin

Facebook Messenger Gets a Halloween Makeover, with New Prompts to Promote Word Effects

With a new set of themed AR effects, new video backgrounds, and stickers for text and video chats, Facebook hopes to help Messenger users get into the Halloween spirit.

To begin with, Facebook is introducing four new 'haunted worlds,' which will allow users to enjoy Halloween-themed AR elements in both Messenger and Instagram.

According to Facebook:

"Explore four haunted worlds - a ghoul-inhabited labyrinth, a bustling robot hive, a ghost-filled nebula (coming Oct. 23) and a misty planet filled with sinister flora (coming Oct. 30) - through our AR effects."

Messenger users will also have the opportunity to try out a new Halloween 360 wallpaper and sticker pack:

Users will be able to add Halloween frames and stickers to their shared photographs on Messenger Kids, as well as adopt virtual pet ghosts that will reside in the augmented reality environment.

Aside from these seasonal changes, Facebook is hoping to boost the use of its new Word Effects, which it first introduced in August. Various emojis are associated with the use of specific terms in your chats with this option.

According to Facebook:

“Now, when you send standalone messages like “goodnight,” “congrats” and “jk,” you’ll see an option to create a word effect for that term, including a suggested emoji pairing.”

As you can see, when you say a trigger word that you specify, a flood of your chosen emoji floats up the screen. Which sounds like it may quickly get irritating – but in any case, Facebook wants more people to try it out, and the reminders will undoubtedly help to boost awareness.

Finally, Facebook is introducing several new themed backgrounds, such as Dune and a soothing 'care' graphic, as well as James Bond Soundmojis to commemorate the debut of the latest Bond film.

The choices could help users get into the holiday spirit, while the new background selections, coupled with Word Effects, provide more creative consideration to your chats.

Messenger's new features will be available this week.

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