Meta is finally rolling out end-to-end encryption for one-on-one chats and calls on Messenger, something that was promised several years ago.

End-to-end encryption means that “nobody, including Meta, can see what’s sent or said” other than those in the chat, according to Meta. Such chats were first introduced through an opt-in feature back in 2016. Now, they will be the standard moving forward.

End-to-end encryption is still opt-in only for group chats and Instagram messages are not yet encrypted, although Meta earlier stated that this would follow “shortly after” the rollout of default private Messenger chats. What’s more, the introduction of Meta’s end-to-end encrypted conversations comes with a range of other new features for Facebook and Messenger users.

Here’s a look at what new features have been launched alongside end-to-end encryption.

What new features are available to Facebook chats?

These features include the ability to edit messages, higher media quality, and disappearing messages.

For up to 15 minutes after a message has been sent, you can now edit messages that may have been sent too soon, or for any typos that you only notice after hitting send.

Previous versions of edited messages will still be accessible to Meta, so you can still report abuse in an edited message.

Disappearing messages are now only possible on end-to-end encrypted chats, lasting 24 hours before disappearing for good.

You can still report disappearing messages if you receive something inappropriate, and you’ll be notified if someone screenshots a disappearing message.

Meta has also made photos and videos easier to access, upgraded the image quality, added fun layouts, and given people more controls so they can reply or react to any photo or video in a collection.

There are plans for more improvements over the coming months, such as HD media and file sharing improvements that are currently being tested with a small group of users.

Other long-standing features remain, such as voice memos and the option to turn read receipts on and off. All of this content within chats will also be protected by end-to-end encryption.

Featured image: Meta

Rachael Davis

Freelance Journalist

Rachael Davies has spent six years reporting on tech and entertainment, writing for publications like the Evening Standard, Huffington Post, Dazed, and more. From niche topics like the latest gaming mods to consumer-faced guides on the latest tech, she puts her MA in Convergent Journalism to work, following avenues guided by a variety of interests. As well as writing, she also has experience in editing as the UK Editor of The Mary Sue , as well as speaking on the important of SEO in journalism at the Student Press Association National Conference. You can find her full portfolio over on Muck Rack or follow her on social media on X.