Facebook Messenger appears to be testing an unsend feature not unlike the one already available on Instagram.
The feature was spotted by developer and tipster Jane Manchun Wong in Messenger’s Android code, where she noticed an ‘Unsend Message’ option.
It comes many months after Facebook said in April it would be shipping such a feature for users. The social media giant only announced it would after it was caught deleting messages already sent by CEO Mark Zuckerberg to other users.
Currently, users can delete messages from a conversation, but they’ll still appear in the recipient’s chat log.
With the Unsend feature, they’d be able to delete it from both their own and the recipient’s conversation.
The tool can be accessed in the Messenger app by clicking on the ‘Edit’ option.
The screenshots show users would have a certain amount of time to unsend a message after they’ve sent it.
Once a user selects the feature, a pop-up window will appear asking them to confirm their choice.
Currently, users can delete messages from a chat, but they’ll still appear in the recipient’s chat log. Now, they can delete it from both their own and the recipient’s conversation
The notice adds: ‘Your message will be removed from the chat, and you.’
It’s unclear when or if this feature will appear for users.
‘Facebook internally tests products and features before they ship to the public so we can ensure the quality of the experience,’ a Facebook spokesperson told TechCrunch.
Facebook wouldn’t be the first tech platform to test an unsend feature.
Earlier this year, Instagram began allowing users to unsend messages sent via Instagram Direct.
To do so, users press down on a message and wait until a window pops up giving them the option to ‘Copy, Paste or Unsend.’
They hit Unsend and it will remove the message from the chat. However, the recipient may still receive a notification on their smartphone saying you sent a message, as well as its contents, depending on their settings.
Gmail also has an ‘Undo Send’ feature which lets users unsend messages within a 30 second window.
Facebook began feeling the pressure to release an Unsend feature after its CEO got caught deleting messages.
Three sources claimed old Facebook messages from Zuckerberg had disappeared from their inbox.
The recipients were not notified – raising concerns about what the Facebook CEO could be hiding.
Facebook claims the change was made after the 2014 Sony Pictures hack, when a mass data breach at the movie studio resulted in embarrassing email histories being leaked.
However, the lack of disclosure angered some users, along with the absence of a similar tool to recall messages for normal users.
The fact the the company is prepared to make exceptions makes a mockery of its statement that it wants to ‘make the world more open and transparent’, experts said at the time.