Messages in iOS 10 brings iMessage apps, emoji suggestions, and visual effects overload

Apple is letting third-party developers turn iMessage into a WeChat clone.

Emoji, stickers, and bubble effects, oh my! Apple has opened the floodgates of its most popular app in iOS 10.

At WWDC on Monday, Apple revealed that iOS 10 is making the Messages app way more visual and emoji-friendly, just as the overall iMessage platform will begin to integrate third-party apps. Developers will be able to create apps specifically for iMessage that will let you send stickers or perform certain group-actions right from the Messages app.

ios 10 emoji tap to replace Apple

In terms of style, Messages is getting a major “emojification” in iOS 10. Emoji that are sent by themselves (meaning without accompanying text) are three times bigger. And you will get emoji suggestions as you type.

Messages will also let you replace certain keywords with emojis—simply compose a message, then press the emoji button, and the app will highlight all the words that have a corresponding emoji. Tap on the highlighted words to replace them with said emoji. So a phrase like, the monkey likes pizza, gets translated into, the 🐒 wants 🍕

“Children of tomorrow will have no concept of the English language,” said Craig Federighi, Apple’s senior VP of software engineering, while demonstrating the new Messages during the WWDC keynote.

In addition, Messages will let you say it “loud” or “whisper” with large or small Bubble Effects. If you really want to go overboard, there are also full-screen effects, like fireworks that burst in the background. In addition, you can send handwritten messages, Digital Touch interactive cards, your heartbeat, and even Tap Back to add a quick emoji response to a specific messages.

ios 10 messages digital touch Apple

Messages in iOS 10 also has a new feature called Invisible Ink that will send a hidden text or photo that the recipient then has to swipe in order to decipher. Lastly, any URL you send in Messages will get a visual treatment, with artwork taken from the website. And videos and Apple Music links will play inline. Plus, it’s easier to attach a photo or video from your camera roll, or even take a new video and photo to send.

All that is only what Apple has done to the Messages app natively. In iOS 10, third-party developers will also be able to create apps designed specifically to be linked to iMessage. The most obvious examples are stickers and multimedia cards that incorporate your videos and photos, but Apple also demonstrated a case study where a group of friends could all compile and submit a food order without leaving the Messages app. In order to accommodate these third-party integrations, Messages will have a new app drawer where you can see all compatible apps or install new ones from the App Store.

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags iOS 10Messaging

Our Back to Business guide highlights the best products for you to boost your productivity at home, on the road, at the office, or in the classroom.

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Oscar Raymundo

Macworld.com
Show Comments

Cool Tech

Crucial Ballistix Elite 32GB Kit (4 x 8GB) DDR4-3000 UDIMM

Learn more >

Gadgets & Things

Lexar® Professional 1000x microSDHC™/microSDXC™ UHS-II cards

Learn more >

Family Friendly

Lexar® JumpDrive® S57 USB 3.0 flash drive 

Learn more >

Stocking Stuffer

Plox Star Wars Death Star Levitating Bluetooth Speaker

Learn more >

Christmas Gift Guide

Click for more ›

Most Popular Reviews

Latest News Articles

Resources

GGG Evaluation Team

Kathy Cassidy

STYLISTIC Q702

First impression on unpacking the Q702 test unit was the solid feel and clean, minimalist styling.

Anthony Grifoni

STYLISTIC Q572

For work use, Microsoft Word and Excel programs pre-installed on the device are adequate for preparing short documents.

Steph Mundell

LIFEBOOK UH574

The Fujitsu LifeBook UH574 allowed for great mobility without being obnoxiously heavy or clunky. Its twelve hours of battery life did not disappoint.

Andrew Mitsi

STYLISTIC Q702

The screen was particularly good. It is bright and visible from most angles, however heat is an issue, particularly around the Windows button on the front, and on the back where the battery housing is located.

Simon Harriott

STYLISTIC Q702

My first impression after unboxing the Q702 is that it is a nice looking unit. Styling is somewhat minimalist but very effective. The tablet part, once detached, has a nice weight, and no buttons or switches are located in awkward or intrusive positions.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?