Facebook is developing its own Bitmoji-style feature, called Facebook Avatars
Who knew the old tradition of replicating yourself in full pixel glory would be as big a hit as it was back in the days of MSN? Snapchat and Bitmoji users certainly do.
Now, not afraid to borrow popular features from its competitors, Facebook is seemingly working on a Bitmoji-style feature itself, and it will let you create illustrated versions of yourself for use as Stickers across the platform.
The Facebook Avatars screenshots were discovered deep in the Facebook Android app’s code by developer Jane Manchun Wong, and Facebook confirmed this finding in a statement to TechCrunch.
“We’re looking into more ways to help people express themselves on Facebook,” the company told TechCrunch. “Your Facebook Avatar is a whole new way to express yourself on Facebook. Leave expressive comments with personalised stickers. Use your new Avatar stickers in your Messenger group and private chats.”
We don’t know what exactly the Facebook Avatar feature is going to contain – whether it will be a full building and creation platform, like Bitmoji, or whether it will use AI to replicate your face, ala Samsung Galaxy S9’s AR Emoji or Facebook’s own Oculus app, Spaces. Though we assume you will be able to customise your hair, clothes and skin tone, just like Bitmoji.
The company last year showed off 3D VR Avatars at its F8 conference, and expanded on this feature last week, adding the ability to map a photo directly into VR for use with Oculus. The 3D avatar hasn’t been without controversy, however, with Zuckerberg choosing to make a tone-deaf appearance through disaster-stricken Puerto Rico.
This isn’t the first feature that Facebook has cloned from Snapchat. Back in 2017, Facebook launched Stories and it recently added disappearing messages into Messenger. Snap acquired Bitmoji back in 2016 for over $100 million, and it’s arguably one of Snapchat’s biggest features. We’re just surprised Facebook hasn’t implemented it sooner.