Facebook’s latest and greatest feature is the aptly named Chat-Heads – an addon to Facebook’s messaging system that brings icons of your friends’ heads to Facebook to whatever page you are viewing, allowing a user to initiate a chat, or reply to a message anywhere in Facebook. This functionality was brought to iOS, but with limitations, having been born into the recently previewed Facebook Home, due to limitations with how deep developers are allowed to integrate their App into iOS. However, the Facebook Chat-Heads could soon been seen system-wide thanks to an upcoming Cydia tweak.
The Verge reported that developer Adam Bell, who is known for previous tweaks such as Stride, is working on a Cydia tweak that would see Facebook Chat-Heads functionality integrated system-wide, enabling other Apps to leverage their use such as BiteSMS, or iMessage. Bell was able to strip the Facebook Chat-Heads code from the App and manipulate the layers of iOS to make the Facebook Chat-Heads stay on top of whatever window is being displayed. Created in only a matter of hours, Bell says, “The hardest part was getting this all to render on top of everything else”. The tweak effectively keeps Facebook running constantly in the background, but Bell confirms that it doesn’t seem to have any effect on battery life, and in fact isn’t very resource intensive at all, stating that “Only when you move the Chat Head is it actually doing anything.”
Bell’s version of his Cydia tweak is still in development, with the last few bugs being ironed out, but will be released in the next few days as a free tweak in Cydia. Initially it will not support SMS, but it is suspected such functionality will be introduced at a later date.
Be sure to check back here in the near future for updates on the release of the Facebook Chat-Heads Cydia tweak in the next few days.