[Update: In Beta] Facebook tests a screen sharing feature in its Messenger app
Facebook Messenger has been the standalone app for chatting on Facebook’s primary social media platform, so much so that even the primary Facebook for Android app does not even let you converse with people privately without redirecting you to install Messenger. Messenger has its own merits and demerits, but Facebook is constantly exploring new ways to get users hooked onto its chatting app and use it as their primary form of communication. The newest feature that Facebook is working on for Messenger is enabling screen sharing functionality.
According to prolific reverse engineer Ms. Jane Manchun Wong, Facebook has recently begun work on bringing over Screen Sharing feature for its Messenger app users. The feature would be accessible as a button in the Audio/Video call screen. When the user turns on screen share, the camera is turned off and users in the chat will be able to see content that is being actively displayed on the user’s screen. On Android, Screen Share will work only if the user has granted Messenger permission to capture content displayed on the screen.
So far, this feature only appears to be sharing the content displayed, without offering any way to the other party to control the interaction. For now, this feature will have limited use, perhaps in quickly sharing content among friends to take their opinions, or in allowing grandkids troubleshoot issues on their grandparent’s device with relative ease, eliminating the need to install a dedicated app for the same. Facebook is known to diversify its apps to fulfill several roles, so the company integrating screen sharing functionality to an instant messaging app elicits no surprise since it is not so far out of the ordinary. This feature is currently in development, so there are chances that it may never make it to a stable release.
Source: Jane Manchun Wong
Update 1: Available in Messenger Beta
According to Dmytro Tkachuk on Twitter, the screen sharing feature in Facebook’s Messenger app is showing up in the beta app for Android. If you start a video call with someone or a group, you may see a pop-up that asks you if you want to “share your screen together.” If you continue, you’ll grant Messenger access to record your screen via the MediaProjection API.
Let us know in the comments if you are seeing this feature in the Android app!