Facebook Messenger is set to get a few new features — the service will now intelligently detect when you want to send money to a friend.
Another new feature is the ability to create in-chat polls, which is especially helpful when you are trying to figure out what to eat for dinner in a group message. The new features are rolling out to both iOS and Android this week, however they are only available in the U.S. for now.
To detect when you might want to send money, the app will use machine learning, and recognizes certain words like ‘IOU.’ Once it does detect that you need to pay money to a friend, it will prompt you to do so, at which point you can tell it how much to send. For example, if your friend sends you a message saying that you owe him or her $ 15, Messenger will include a link prompting you to pay $ 15. According to Facebook, the automated service is optional and while those outside of the U.S. can view polls, for now they cannot answer them.
When it comes to chat polls, the feature is currently only available in group messages, so the chat has to contain more than two people if you want to create a poll. Anyone in the group chat can tap on the Polls icon which appears when you hit the ‘More’ button. After that, you can type in a question and a series of appropriate answers for the others in the message to answer. According to Facebook, polls do not have a time limit, so if you can find a poll from weeks back, you can still answer it.
If you do not see the new features yet, make sure you have the latest version of Facebook Messenger. If you do not, you will most likely get an update soon.