Facebook Messenger gains a powerful new camera with art and 3D effects

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Facebook Messenger doesn’t just let you chat with friends, you can also use it to play games.

Today, the chat app introduces a faster, and easier to use camera that will let you spice up your conversations, and capture and share moments as they happen. There’s more to it than just that, though.

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Facebook says “in some ways the camera is now replacing the keyboard” and so it has tweaked its camera to make it more useful. The shutter button appears in the center of the screen for quick access.

There’s a new section for art and special effects. Unsurprisingly, since Facebook likes to borrow ideas from Snapchat and others, it’s introduced 3D masks and effects for you to apply to your images. As Christmas is upon us, there are some seasonal designs available, so you can turn yourself into a reindeer, or play with falling snow.

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Facebook has added thousands of stickers, frames, masks and effects to the app, which you can personalize as you wish.

A new palette icon next to the shutter lets you add art and stickers to your text, dressing up normal conversations.

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