The Facebook logo is displayed on their website in an illustration photo taken in Bordeaux, France, February 1, 2017. Reuters/Regis Duvignau

Gone are the days when Facebook Messenger would be just an ordinary chatting tool it once was. Since it was first introduced to the public as an independent tool in 2014, the social media giant has incorporated an array of exciting features to the service catering to millions of users worldwide.

Over the past year, Facebook has made changes of a wide range to Messenger. Following is a rundown of the latest improvements users can experience:

Facebook Messenger can Snap!

Facebook now allows users to send Snapchat-styled pictures and videos to their friends and family. The latest feature can be used by looking for the smiley, text and doodle icons at the top right of the screen after one taps the camera icon. Just like Snapchat, tapping the circular button towards the bottom of the screen clicks a picture; a long long-pressing it captures a video.

Messenger Snap
Messenger Snap Shaurya

Following the footsteps of Snachat, Instagram and WhatsApp

Facebook has also introduced Messenger Day, which allows one to share their snaps with their friends. Along the lines of Snapchat, Instagram and now WhatsApp, the stories can be viewed for 24 hours before being automatically erased. The tool has as many as 5,000 frames, effects and stickers, the company announced.

Sending money made easy

With the latest update, users will also be able to send money via Messenger. Although transactions can be carried out for free, the feature only supports debit cards for now – and so, credit cards and other forms of payment have not been included in the latest update. To avail this tool, one can feed in their debit card details to their account in the settings menu. The feature is currently available in the United States only.

Celebrating birthdays with attractive displays

Unarguably, the best part of Messenger (and any other messaging service app) is the array of emojis it offers. In lieu of this, Facebook has released an emoji trick that allows one to create a display of balloons flying up the screen and send it to any of their friends celebrating their birthday. One only needs to send a balloon emoji to a friend. Upon opening the message, the friend will see balloons flying up to the top of the screen.

Birthday Shaurya

Group video calls made easy

The latest update of Facebook Messenger also includes a group video messaging feature. To use this, one needs to open a group conversation and tap on the phone icon at the top of the screen.

Group chat
Group chat Shaurya

Secret stash of messages?

Although this feature has been around for a long time, it is extremely useful. Facebook Messenger app has a second inbox that contains messages from people not part of one’s Facebook friends group. This inbox is secretly tucked away and so, it is possible one may not have stumbled across it already. One can go to this inbox by clicking Settings and performing the action People >> Message Requests >> See Filtered Requests .

Game away to glory

The second inbox may qualify as a secret tool, but the games embedded in Facebook Messenger most certainly are not. While the basketball game attracted massive attention last March, a few tricks can help one top their previous best scores.

For starters, it is advised one use their index finger to swipe the ball into the basket. Playing the game with one hand may be convenient, but it is not the most ideal method to achieve high scores. One can even try placing the phone on a table or a flat surface to enhance stability.

Basketball Shaurya

Short flicks broaden the chances of missing the basket. Using longer swipes, instead, ensures that the ball reaches and goes through the target. Moreover, by using this trick, the user will also be able to shoot straight and not sway.

Another hack that can serve as a full proof way to beat your friend’s scores is lining a ruler from the ball to the target and navigating the swipes easily, helping amassing more points.