Your Facebook feed may soon look more like Snapchat. The social network’s latest update lets users quickly add text to photos uploaded through its mobile app.
To access the feature, tap on "Photo." Select a pic to upload, and press "Done." At the bottom of the photo, you will see four icons. By tapping the “Aa” icon, you can start typing over the image. The text will initially appear in white, but you can change the color by selecting from the right sidebar. The text will also appear automatically centered. The position and size can be changed by holding onto the text and then stretching or swiping the letters.
Previously, Facebook users could add text and drawings to photos via the standalone Messenger app. This update now extends that function to the original Facebook app. The feature is not yet available via desktop. A Facebook representative declined to comment on future versions of the feature, but confirmed that it is currently being rolled out on the Facebook app for iPhone.
There are many standalone apps and sites that allow mobile users to add words and other images over their photos as well as other editing features. However, this update by Facebook could encourage users to spend more time within the app or on the site. The update comes after the company failed to meet first-quarter earnings expectations. While the site’s user growth has continued steadily, with 1.4 billion individuals as of April, there has been a decline in average revenue generated per user.
Perhaps to improve those figures, Facebook has taken a page out of Snapchat’s book. The popular disappearing photo and video sharing app has long let users overlap text, emoji and filters to their photos. In July 2014, Snapchat added geofilters, designs based on a user’s location that are created by the company and submitted by users.
Facebook has repeatedly mimicked features from Snapchat. Indeed, the company created a rival disappearing-photo sharing app called Poke in 2012 and then created Slingshot in 2014.