With over 800 million served, Viber has carved out a nice chunk of the messaging market for themselves. Today, they’re taking a few steps to hold down that chunk with a major new update bringing a few new features to Viber’s mobile app.
First up is instant video messaging. This is like what Snap introduced in Snapchat’s Chat 2.0 update — short video messages that show up as little circles instead of full-on videos. The voice Message button (in the bottom right of a Viber chat) can now be toggled between voice and video messages. From there, hold the button down, record your message, and send. Viber’s instant video messages can be no more than 30 seconds long, so they’re meant to be fun little blurbs.
The change that will affect us personally the most is the Emoji Redesign, of course. This was a big year for emoji, with diversity initiatives and major redesigns from the likes of Facebook. Now Viber is getting into the act, giving their emoji a flatter, more cartoony design. It’s not a huge change, but the slight 3D effects and shading are gone.
Last up, Viber is introducing third party extensions and a pretty cool new search feature. The big change here will be a new @ button next to the icons for stickers and uploading and taking pictures. The @ button launches the search feature — for one, it makes it easier to find stickers. After tapping the button, you’ll get a list of extensions, starting with the sticker store. Once @stickers is in there, the messaging field becomes a search bar — type in food, and you’ll get food stickers! The same goes for the new third party extensions. Viber has added Wikipedia, Giphy, and The MovieDB, which can all be searched in the same way. So, you can throw some well-researched information into your chat or, more importantly, search through Giphy for eye-rolling gifs within seconds. That is, in all seriousness, how you stay on top of the messaging game.
The new Viber update goes live today and is available for both the iOS and Android apps.
This story was originally published at Today’s Viber Update Brings Instant Video Messages and an Emoji Redesign