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Image: Thomas Trutschel/Photothek via Getty ImagesBy Monica Chin2018-04-03 18:42:19 UTC

Your messages are about to become way more immersive.
On Tuesday, Facebook rolled out the ability to send 360-degree photos in Messenger. It’s now available all over the world for both iOS and Android. 

To take a 360 photo in Messenger, take a panorama with your phone’s camera, or take a 360 photo with a third-party camera or app. You can now share it in Messenger as you would any other photo — the app will convert panoramas to 360 photos automatically.
As Facebook product managers Sean Kelly and Hagen Green wrote in a company blog post, “the world is your oyster now in Messenger.” 
Here’s what a 360 message looks like: 

Image: screenshot: monica chin/facebookThe update also allows you to send HD videos. To share one, just select it from your camera roll the way you would any other video. You can also share now HD videos that pop up on your news feed, or forward them from one message thread to another. 
Facebook is ahead of its competitors when it comes to 360 photos. Twitter and Instagram don’t natively support such photos, though you can imitate them with third-party tools. 
Facebook, by contrast, has been rolling out support for 360-degree, immersive content over the past year. In August, the social network rolled out a built-in 360-degree camera, and began allowing users to choose a 360 photo as their profile picture or cover photo. Just a week later, company researchers announced they training a neural network to edit the photos and improve their stitching. And Facebook continues to increase support for 3D content, which users can click and rotate in a similar fashion to 360 photos. 
The new feature is the next step in Facebook’s quest to make Messenger every user’s go-to by maximizing what it can do. In December, the company reached out to gamers by giving users ability to livestream their faces while playing Messenger games. Earlier that month it launched Messenger Kids, in a grab for the younger generation (or perhaps their parents).  
The majority of users may never know this feature exists, but there’s now another use case where 360 photographers won’t be required to jump to a different app. 

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