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(Pocket-lint) - Facebook Messenger has updated with a new feature: Shortcuts.

Slack, a well-known communication tool for teams and businesses, helped popularise shortcuts in chat apps, by allowing users to do things like quickly notify everyone in a channel or easily insert a GIF. Now, Meta, the parent company of Facebook, is following suit and rolling shortcuts of its own for Messenger users to enjoy. 

Here is everything you need to know about shortcuts in Facebook Messenger, including which ones are available and how they work.

Which shortcuts can you use in Facebook Messenger?

As of 28 March 2022, Messenger users on iOS and Android can try the following shortcuts:

  • @everyone will let you notify everyone in a group chat
  •  /silent will let you send a message without pinging the whole group

In “the coming weeks" (likely by May 2022), there will be a handful of other shortcuts available:

  • /pay will let you send or request money (on iOS and Android in the US)
  • /gif and a topic will serve up potential GIFs to send in a chat (on iOS)
  • /shrug will drop the ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ emoticon (on iOS)
  • /tableflip will bring up the (╯°□°)╯︵ ┻━┻ emoticon (on iOS)

How to use shortcuts on Facebook Messenger

You know how typing "@" and a person’s name will tag that specific person in a chat on Messenger? These new shortcuts in Messenger work the same way.

Say you want to grab everyone’s attention, or maybe you want to share a thought without disturbing someone at 3am. That's when you'd use the @everyone or /silent shortcuts, respectively. Simply open the latest version of the Facebook Messenger app on your iPhone or Android device, enter a group chat or DM, and type a shortcut followed by your message. It's that easy. 

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Want to know more?

Check out Meta's blog post for more details. Pocket-lint also has a guide on Slack if you care to know more about how that works.

Writing by Maggie Tillman.