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Facebook Messenger adds Spanish translations and new AR effects for businesses

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Que bueno

Facebook Messenger is adding automated translations to let buyers and sellers communicate when making purchases, the company said today. When users conduct a transaction through Facebook Marketplace and they receive a message in a language other than their default language, Messenger’s M bot will offer to translate it on their behalf. To start, translation features will be available in the United States for translating English to Spanish and vice versa.

Translations were one of several features Facebook announced for Messenger today at its F8 developer conference. Other additions include augmented reality effects for businesses, which let advertisers prompt users to open their camera, which they can pre-populate with filters and AR effects.

The effects can be used both to let users visualize products for sale as they might appear in their homes and as marketing tools that encourage people to share branded content with friends. Asus, Kia, Nike, and Sephora are among the brands making filters for Messenger at launch.

Developers have built more than 300,000 bots for Messenger, up from 100,000 last year, Facebook said today. Total message volume has grown by four times over the past year, to 8 billion messages a day, Facebook said. (One question Facebook hasn’t answered: how much money have these developers made from their Messenger bots?)