Facebook Messenger Introduces AR Group Effects

Turn your next video call into an interactive party with Facebook’s collection of multiplayer AR experiences.

Group Effects is a new feature available now on Facebook Messenger and Messenger Rooms that allows Facebook users to interact with a variety of AR experiences during group video calls. Whereas existing AR effects could only be applied to a single user, Group Effects effect everyone in the group simultaneously, whether it be a simple face filter or an interactive multiplayer game.

Image Credit: Facebook

Yes, Group Effects offer far more than your standard face filters, though there are plenty of those as well. Multiplayer AR gaming experiences allow you to compete against other users in real-time. At the time of this writing, there are over 70 Group Effects available on Facebook Messenger and Messenger Rooms. This includes a burger-stacking mini-game as well as a virtual feline that explores the video call as you chat.

“Group Effects provide a more engaging and interactive way to connect with your friends. They also support the creator community and give people more ways to express themselves,” said the Facebook Messenger team in an official release. “We all rely on video calls to bridge physical distance and interact with the world around us, especially now. With this new feature, those interactions will become more memorable, intimate, and exciting than ever before.”

Image Credit: Facebook

Group Effects are powered by Facebook’s new Spark AR Multipeer API, which has been expanded to allow creators to develop more complex interactive experiences, including, of course, Group Effects. The Spark AR Mulipeer API will be made available to all developers at the end of the month.

To access Group Effects, open your Facebook Messenger app. After starting a call or entering a room, tap on the white smiley face icon to access the effects tray. From here, it’s just a matter of selecting “Group Effects” from the available options.

Group Effects are available now for Facebook Messenger and Messenger Rooms with plans for an official Instagram launch in the near future. For more information visit here.

Feature Image Credit: Facebook

About the Scout

Former Writer (Kyle Melnick)

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