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iOS 16.4: iMessage now supports rich content previews for Mastodon posts

Here’s an iOS 16.4 surprise: the Messages app now supports rich previews for Mastodon posts when you share a link to a post in an iMessage conversation. This brings Apple’s Mastodon support up to parity with the long-standing integration with Twitter for similar tweet balloon previews.

The new integration means that when sharing a link to a Mastodon post, iMessage fetches details like the post text, author name, attachments and renders it inline in the conversation thread.

This go beyonds the standard web link previews that Messages attempts to fetch for any web URL, which do not include content like the Mastodon post body.

This addition is perhaps the strongest sign of support from Apple to date for the federated social media service. Mastodon has grown in popularity in recent months, even going so far as to be endorsed by Apple Fellow Phil Schiller, as Twitter users frustrated by Elon Musk’s product decisions look for alternatives.

An example of a Mastodon embed in iMessage, displaying this Mastodon post describing another new change in iOS 16.4.

The first beta of iOS 16.4 was released today, available now for developers. A seed for public beta members is expected to follow shortly. Other new features in iOS 16.4 include new emojis, new features for web apps, UI updates to Apple Music and more.

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Avatar for Benjamin Mayo Benjamin Mayo

Benjamin develops iOS apps professionally and covers Apple news and rumors for 9to5Mac. Listen to Benjamin, every week, on the Happy Hour podcast. Check out his personal blog. Message Benjamin over email or Twitter.