The social media seems to be going through a phase of mishmash as services like Twitter and Facebook are borrowing each other’s features. Twitter did it by replacing the Favorite button with the Like button and Facebook now has taken a leaf from Snapchat’s playbook and is apparently testing out a self-destructing message feature.


The disappearing messages can be turned on by toggling an hourglass icon on the top right of their screen, however any participants of the conversation can turn off the by simply tapping again on the hourglass feature. Currently, the feature is being tested with handful of users in France and we aren’t sure if and when it will be rolled out to other users across the world.

The self-destructive messaging feature will be launched for Facebook messenger which boasts of nearly 700 million users. That being said the self-destructing feature seems to be squarely aimed at Snapchat, a Messaging app which Facebook tried to acquire sometime back.

So self-destructing messages are nothing new, in fact basic phones like the Nokia 1100 came with something called as Flash SMS (hope we got the name right) feature which deleted the SMS within a certain interval of time. Even when it comes to the modern messaging app, Facebook is certainly not the first to introduce such feature as apps like Line and WeChat have already done so.

The intension of the self-destructing messages seems to be far from serious business, it in fact it tries to simulate a real time conversation wherein you can’t just scroll back and see what someone said a while ago! Facebook has also fired off a similar feature called poke, which was eventually shut down.

If Facebook is trying to fish users from the Snapchat pool, then it is a herculean task. Snapchat has been piggybacking on the self-destructing messages right from its inception and it is very unlikely that people would just switch over to Facebook once they introduce the service.

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Senior Author

Mahit Huilgol is a Mechanical Engineering graduate and is a Technology and Automobile aficionado. He ditched the Corporate boardroom wars in the favor for technology battle ground. Also a foodie by heart and loves both the edible chips and the non-edible silicon chips.