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Facebook introduces Group Video Chat in Messenger, new user interface, and 3D masks

Facebook Messenger Group Video Chat

Facebook has announced a new feature coming to Messenger called Group Video Chat. As the name implies, you can now initiate group video conferences with others using the social media’s messaging application. The best part, though, is that you can have a video call with up to 50 people at a time…

Once you have the newest version of Messenger installed, you can start a group video call by hopping into or starting a new group conversation and then tapping on the video icon located on the upper-right side of the screen. You will immediately be brought into the video call while everyone else in the conversation will get a notification asking to join in.

Group Video Chat is super easy to use (and, of course, free over wifi!). You can see up to six people at a time … but don’t worry if your group is a little larger because up to 50 friends can join in and choose to just listen in and join via voice, or be on camera. Once more than 6 people are on the call, just the dominant speaker is shown to all participants.

Also released in the new Messenger application is something call 3D masks. Facebook purchased a company called MSQRD earlier this year that used facial recognition to create Snapchat-like filters. With this new version of Messenger, we are finally seeing these new 3D masks available in the camera application. They will also be available in group video calls on Android “soon.”

Facebook is rolling out the Group Video Chat feature on Android, iOS, and the desktop version of Messenger starting today. With it, the application’s user interface will be getting a facelift that features round edges near the top of the screen. A quick swipe downward will now launch you directly into the camera application which features the brand new 3D masks.

You can download Facebook Messenger for free from the Google Play Store.

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Avatar for Justin Duino Justin Duino

I’m a writer for 9to5Google with a background in IT and Android development. Follow me on Twitter to read my ramblings about tech and email me at Tips are always welcome.