Twitter to Start Testing Voice Direct Messages: Report

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Twitter is going to test a feature that will let users send voice messages through direct messages (DMs), as per a report. A Twitter executive revealed that the micro-blogging site plans to start testing voice DMs and Brazil will be the first country where the upcoming feature will be tested. The new feature is also expected to have a simple interface. Twitter had recently rolled out audio tweets for iOS users, but the update isn’t available for everyone yet.

Alex Ackerman-Greenberg, product manager for direct messages at Twitter, told The Verge that Twitter will be testing voice DMs soon. Ackerman-Greenberg said that they were aware that people wanted more options for how they express themselves in private and public conversations on Twitter. Fittingly, Ackerman-Greenberg informed the publication about the new development through a 20-second voice message on Twitter.

Voice messages on Twitter feature is expected to have a simple interface; there will just be a play/pause button. The product team has reportedly designed an “in-line recording experience to make it easier to send these messages as part of the natural conversation flow.” This makes it different from the audio tweets interface that Twitter had rolled out to some iOS users in June.

Users will have the option of reporting a message in case the new feature is misused. Currently, people can send text, GIFs, images, and videos through direct messages. While the Ackerman-Greenberg revealed that the feature will be tested in Brazil first, there is no information about when the voice messages feature will be rolled out, even if just on a testing basis, to other countries.

Twitter received backlash for the audio tweets feature it had recently rolled out for iOS. It was blamed for not factoring in accessibility, making Twitter even more inaccessible to people with hearing limitations. A Twitter executive has, however, said in a recent interview that they now have a full-time accessibility team within product development and that accessibility would be considered even when features are conceptualised.

While this will be a first for Twitter, WhatsApp, Instagram, and their parent company Facebook already have voice messaging features available on direct messages.


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