Google Messages could be in for a new wave of handy upgrades

Google Messages blue logo
(Image credit: Jay Bonggolto / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Hidden flags in Google Messages beta revealed potential upcoming features, including camera effects and the ability to remove preview drafts.
  • If the camera effects feature becomes public, users will be able to enhance their photos directly from the camera interface, bringing a fun element to their chats.
  • The app might also undergo changes such as eliminating the display of top contacts when tapping the search icon.

Google Messages is continuously introducing new features and shows no signs of slowing down, with more upgrades in the pipeline.

Prolific leaker AssembleDebug on TheSpAndroid uncovered a bunch of new features in the latest Google Messages beta. Based on some hidden flags, it looks like we might get camera effects and the option to remove preview drafts.

For the uninitiated, Google Messages has its own camera activity right inside the app, which does not rely on your phone's camera app. Now, it seems like Google is working on some nifty camera effects for the messaging app, and you'll probably be able to turn them on or off with a toggle.

When and if this feature becomes public, you'll be able to jazz up your photos with filters and cool effects right from the camera interface, adding a dash of fun to your chats.

Additionally, Google Messages might remove the preview of draft messages from the main chat screen. It makes the app's main screen look cleaner, although it may also tuck away a handy feature. It's possible that it might be a flag Google uses for internal debugging, as per Android Authority.

In the next Messages update, Google might also ditch showing your top contacts when you tap the search icon. Usually, it displays recent contacts you've chatted with. However, as per AssembleDebug, a potential change could make that top contact list vanish completely.

google messages search interface without the top contacts section

(Image credit: TheSpAndroid)

Late last year, Google also axed showing top contacts when you're starting a new chat in Messages. Now, it appears that the search giant might take it a step further, hiding the top contacts section altogether.

If that flag turns into an actual feature, finding message recipients could get a bit more time-consuming in the future. You might end up searching and scrolling through your contact list.

Removing the top contacts section would be counterintuitive, but it's unclear which of these changes Google will keep for good in the future.

Jay Bonggolto
News Writer & Reviewer

Jay Bonggolto always keeps a nose for news. He has been writing about consumer tech and apps for as long as he can remember, and he has used a variety of Android phones since falling in love with Jelly Bean. Send him a direct message via Twitter or LinkedIn.