Facebook Messenger unveils two augmented reality games for video chat

Facebook launches social AR games for Messenger

Facebook in talks with banks to expand customer service

Facebook said it's looking to get more banks and financial companies to offer services on its Messenger app, say by allowing a customer to message with his or her bank as an alternative to phone services, but it's not actively asking for data related to financial transactions.

"We hope this new experience - made possible by AR Studio - will help you create fun memories with the people you care about most, even when you can't be together".

As part of the proposed deals, Facebook asked banks for information about where its users are shopping with their debit and credit cards outside of purchases they make using Facebook Messenger.

Dubbed "Don't Smile" and "Asteroids Attack", both are determined to make speaking with those closest to you more engaging then ever.

When playing the game, you'll find a spaceship perched on your nose. Two games are available for Messenger users starting today, but two more will be added very soon.

The Messenger games can be played with up to six people and there's more now in the pipline, including "Beach Bump" and "Kitten Kraze".

The social media company said users of financial firms such as PayPal (PYPL.O), Citibank (C.N) and American Express (AXP.N) could link their financial accounts with Facebook's Messenger and chat with a customer service representative.

Then simply tap the star button and select one of the AR games.

Ever wish you could spice up a video chat with flying asteroids? Snappables allows the user to use touch, motion, and facial expressions to compete for high scores or in literal head-to-head multiplayer match-ups. Currently, the Facebook Messenger has 1.3 billion users so indeed there is tremendous potential here to simplify the bank transactions in quite an easy fashion if the app is able to integrate with the bank and offer numerous banking services as well.

Given what we know about Facebook's approach to consumer data, just from the previous year or so, I think I'll take a 20-minute phone wait over giving them my banking details.

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