Facebook Messenger gets a big makeover


File photo – The Facebook Messenger logo seen displayed on a smartphone (Photo by Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

Change is hard, so brace yourself, Facebook Messenger users: an app overhaul is on the way.

Introduced Tuesday, Messenger 4, which is rolling out now and slated to reach all uses over the coming weeks, is all about simplicity. To that end, Facebook has reduced the number of tabs inside the app from nine to just three: Chats, People, and Discover.

Chats will house all your one-on-one and group conversations, People is where you can check out friends’ stories and see who’s active, and Discover is for connecting with businesses and playing Instant Games.

Facebook Messenger Head Davis Marcus tipped this redesign in January, noting that the app had “become too cluttered.”

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Don’t worry about losing your favorite Messenger features, though: Facebook said they’re all staying put.

“Whether you want to poll your friends on which movie to see, split the bill for last night’s dinner, share your live location to find friends at a music festival, challenge them to your favorite games, or catch up in a group video chat, we aren’t changing anything about what you’ve always loved about Messenger,” Messenger VP Stan Chudnovsky wrote in a blog post.

Meanwhile, one new feature in Messenger 4 lets you spice up your chat bubbles with custom color gradients, which you can see below.

“You can see the colors change from red to blue, for example, as you scroll up and down a conversation,” Chudnovsky explained.

In the future, Facebook plans to introduce a Dark Mode for those who prefer a black background, and a “re-skinned interface that cuts down on the glare from your phone.”

Here’s hoping people like the new version of Messenger better than Shapchat’s widely panned redesign earlier this year. Snapchat was forced to roll back elements of the overhaul after users revolted.

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