Facebook is trial testing a new feature for its Messenger app, in which received audio clips can be automatically transcribed into text.
Currently, it's possible to send voice messages through the app. From the sender's side, the feature can be a convenient alternative to typing, but on the receiving end, there are many situations where it's difficult to stop and listen to the audio clip.
Allowing users to convert audio clips to text could solve this problem. "So, for example, if you’re at a concert or in a meeting, and would prefer to read a voice clip from a friend, you now can if you're part of the small test we're rolling out," David Marcus, Facebook's vice president of messaging products, wrote on Friday.
No word as of yet on when the feature will be available for most users. "Our plan is to test this feature at a tiny scale for now and we're looking forward to seeing what you think of it before making the experience more widely available," Marcus said.
While he did not reference Facebook's recent acquisition of speech recognition startup Wit.ai, analysts predicted at the time that the purchase signaled Facebook's move into voice messaging.