Screen effect on iPhone

Messages has gotten a makeover in iOS 12, and just like iOS 11 and 10, it focuses on bringing the fun.

That includes effects for iPhone or iPad that make bubbles slam, loud, gentle, or invisible, or turn the whole screen to balloons, confetti, lasers, fireworks, or shooting stars.

Here's how to spruce up iMessage!

How do I add bubble effects to my iMessages?

  1. Enter the message you want to send.
  2. Press firmly (3D Touch) or long press (no 3D Touch) on the Send button (looks like an upward pointing arrow).

  3. Select the Bubble tab at the top, if it's not already selected.
  4. Tap on the effect you want to apply: Slam, Loud, Gentle, or Invisible Ink.
  5. Tap in the Send button to the right of the effect you chose (looks like an upward pointing arrow).

How do I cancel a bubble effect in iMessage?

Canceling Bubble effect

If you change your mind about sending a bubble effect, tap the Cancel button at the bottom of the effects list (looks like an X).

What do bubble effects do in iMessage?

  • Slam: Stamps the bubble down and makes the entire screen ripple
  • Loud: Sends a giant bubble that shakes before settling down into place.
  • Gentle: Sends a tiny bubble that meekly slips into place.
  • Invisible ink: Covers the bubble in animated noise and blur until you swipe it out of the way.

Will the bubble effects I send show up in Messages on the Mac?

The Mac can receive the Invisible Ink bubble effect if you're running macOS Sierra or High Sierra.

How do I add screen effects to my iMessages?

You can also send a screen effect from the Messages app or from the new interactive notifications, even from the lock screen!

  1. Enter the message you want to send.
  2. Press firmly (3D Touch) or long press (no 3D Touch) on the Send button (looks like an upward pointing arrow).
  3. Select the Screen tab at the top, if it's not already selected.

  4. Swipe from right to left to switch between the effects you want to apply: balloons, confetti, lasers, fireworks, or shooting stars
  5. Tap in the Send button to the right of your message (looks like an upward pointing arrow).

How do I cancel a screen effect in iMessage?

Canceling Screen effect

If you change your mind about sending a screen effect, tap the Cancel button at the bottom below your message (looks like an X).

How to replay bubble and screen effects in iMessage

You can replay the bubble and screen effects you receive in an iMessage. Just follow these simple steps.

  1. Open Messages.
  2. Open the conversation in which you want to view the effects.
  3. Find a message with an effect attached and press the Replay button to view the effect again.

How to use Message effects with Reduce Motion turned on

If you're using the Reduce Motion setting on your iPhone or iPad, you have the option to automatically play Message effects when Reduced Motion is on. Here's how to use it.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Tap General.
  3. Tap Accessibility.

  4. Tap Reduce Motion.

  5. If it isn't already, flip the Reduce Motion switch to the 'on' position.
  6. Flip the Auto-play Message Effects switch to the 'on' position.

What do screen effects do in iMessage?

Here are all of the current screen effects and what they do.

  • Echo: Have your text duplicate and flood the screen of your recipient.
  • Spotlight: Put a literal spotlight on your incoming iMessage.
  • Balloons: Sends multi-color balloons expanding and flying up from the bottom right of the screen.
  • Confetti: Drops multi-color confetti from the top of the screen.
  • Love: A giant heart will appear to expand and pop from your latest iMessage.
  • Lasers: Fills the screen with "unce, unce, unce" lasers and sound.
  • Fireworks: Sets off multi-color fireworks from the center of the screen.
  • Shooting stars: Launches a "the more you know" starburst shooting from the left of the screen, exploding as it reaches the right.
  • Celebration: Fireworks and festivities aplenty will appear on your iPhone.

Will the screen effects I send show up in Messages on the Mac?

Not currently, no. Maybe in the future?

Questions?

Do you have any questions about bubble and screen effects in iMessages? Put them in the comments and we'll help you out.

Updated July 2018: Added iOS 12 information.

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