Recently, Facebook just launched its new Avatar feature that let you customize a virtual lookalike of yourself for use as stickers in chat and comments. Once you personalize your Avatar face, hair, and clothes, they will star in a range of frequently updated stickers conveying common emotions and phrases. From Likes to Reaction to Avatars, you could see this as the natural natural progression of self-expression on Facebook.
Facebook Avatar launches today in Australia for use in Messenger and News feeds comments before coming to the rest of the world in late 2019 or early 2020. The feature which was newly launched makes Facebook feel more fun, youthful, and visually communicative at a time when the 15-year-old social network increasingly seems dull and uninteresting. Avatars aren’t as cute as that of Bitmoji. But they could still become a popular way to add some flare to replies without cliché GIFs.
There’s been a ton of work put in to this from the product and design perspective to find out , with how many people on Facebook, how to make this as representative as possible. “They’re a bit more realistic so they can be your personal avatar vs trying to make them cute, funny and cartoony”.
How To Make A Facebook Avatar
Users will start to see a smiley-face button in the News Feed comment composers and Messenger sticker chooser they can tap to create their Facebook Avatar. The creation process begins with gender neutral blank people can customize from scratch across 18 traits. Apparently, for now there’s no option to start with a selfie or profile pic and have Facebook automatically generate you avatar. Facebook is researching that technique, so they want to make sure we don’t show you something totally opposite of the photo. Which there’s sensitivity around facial recognition.
Facebook won’t be monetizing directly, at least at first. Facebook is open to these idea, though. “It would help personalize it for sure and from a business perspective that would be smart.” Facebook is also considering making Avatar for use as profile pics or in groups – two areas of the app where you interact with strangers and you might enjoy the anonymity of a 2D drawing instead of a photo on your face. However, Facebook hasn’t deeply considered turning Avatars into a platform so you could use them in other apps through an API or keyboard you install on your phone.
Instead, Step 1 was just to make sure the Avatar creation flow and most people can make one that actually looks like them. The news Feed team that built Avatar plans to conduct surveys and focus groups to help it iterate. When asked about the ability to change the perceived age of avatars to be inclusive of Facebook’s older users.
And that’s it, now you can customize your little lookalike on Facebook. If you want to show how yours turned out, or if you just want to show how wacky and off the wall you made your look.