Facebook users in the US can now use customizable avatars in their stories, comments, and Messenger.
Facebook avatar was first introduced across Canada, Europe, New Zealand, and Australia in 2019. With all of its positive feedback, the social media platform expanded in the United States. The Facebook avatars, which are basically stickers that serve as a digital version of one’s self, have full customizable features such as hair color and styles, outfit choices, and even skin and eye color. Now that Facebook, the largest social media network on the internet, has launched a feature that could replace a person’s real image with a digital version, it will surely step up its game and attract more users.
Bitmoji has been popular in the photo platform Snapchat for around some time. Now, Facebook adapts these avatars and created its own version of the virtual look-alikes. The new avatar feature for Facebook launched in the US on May 20, Wednesday. It lets users create a miniature version of themselves that they could use on stories, comments, and even Facebook Messenger. Soon, the new avatar feature will also be available for use in text posts that has backgrounds. Did you know that most fans of this new avatar buy Facebook post likes? Here’s why.
Facebook Bitmoji Serves As A New Form of Self-expression
According to the head of Facebook App Fidji Simo, a lot of interactions nowadays are happening online. For this reason, it is more important than ever for people to express themselves personally on Facebook. He added that Facebook is excited to provide people from all over the world with a new form of self-expression.
Facebook’s own version of Bitmoji was introduced last year for the very first time after it was spotted in code last 2018. Since then, it has been available in Australia, Europe, New Zealand, as well as Canada. But with Facebook Bitmoji’s release in the US, the tech giant is improving customizability by integrating additional hairstyles, skin complexions, and outfits. The new customization features will allow users to create avatars that closely resemble them,
In order to create your own avatar, all you need to do is to go to Facebook and Messenger’s comment composer. There, you need to click on the Smiley button and then the Sticker tab. From there, you can already make your miniature version on the Create Your Avatar tab. Moreover, you can access the avatar that you created on the Avatars tab.
Facebook Saw A Great Surge in the Number of People Using Bitmoji During Lockdowns
Ever since the pandemic started, a lot of people have been looking for various ways to kill their time while they are stuck inside their homes. Facebook’s avatar served as one way to do just that.
According to Facebook, it has seen a significant increase in the number of people who use bitmoji now that there are lockdowns and stay at home implementations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This suggests that those who are in areas around the world that are placed in lockdowns have increased screen time as well as social media activities.
Just last month, the tech giant announced the release of Messenger Rooms, an alternative to House Party and Zoom video chats. Similarly, WhatsApp has its own response to the pandemic. In order to make communication easier for people now that the pandemic is still on the rise, WhatsApp increased the maximum number of people who can participate in a single video chat.
Snapchat Bitmoji vs Facebook Emoji
True enough avatars may look a little silly. However, they provide a form of self-expression that stands beyond what texts and emojis can do. On digital communications platforms, using an avatar can significantly help to show the tone of your comment. For this reason, you will less likely to be misinterpreted. In addition, many people like to have an option where they can craft a digital character and make it look like them. For instance, they can create miniature models of them with their candy-colored hair, piercings, tattoos, and anything that they want to use to express themselves. Those are some things they cannot do with emojis alone.
As the company releases the new feature that bears a passing resemblance to Snapchat Bitmoji, it noted that it aims to avoid bias problems that can potentially come with facial recognition. In addition, there are stickers that you can use along with your avatar. The stickers come in a range of expressions such as a simple “congratulations,” or the meme “deal with it.” Facebook will not add any branded content, at least not now. While the company admitted that monetizing the content seems to be an excellent idea, it also noted that monetization is not its initial priority. There is also a possibility that the avatars will expand in other areas aside from Messenger. For instance, you may use avatars as a profile picture on Facebook if you do not want to display your real photo for privacy reasons.
Facebook’s Motivations of Emoji Use
It is not difficult to see what Facebook’s motivations are in launching its own version of bitmoji. For a fact, the company has no plans to charge avatar users. Still, it could spark the interest of young users who skip Facebook in favor of Snapchat or Instagram. As mentioned, an avatar can mask a person’s true appearance. So, for a social media platform that is increasingly making privacy as its primary selling point, it makes a lot of sense to offer something that could mask one’s true identity.
Furthermore, Facebook said that its avatar has a personalization feature that promotes as much diversity as possible. However, one feature missing is the ability is to change the age range of the avatars.
Facebook’s spokesperson also added that the avatars that with a lot of expressions and emotions today, the avatar will allow users to react and engage in a more authentic manner with their friends and families who use Facebook and Facebook Messenger.`
Now that Facebook has already launched its latest feature, it is impossible for Facebook users to miss the newest social media craze on their news feed.