Facebook Potentially Planning to Bring Messenger Back to Main Facebook App [Updated With Statement]

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Eight years after separating its Messenger service into a standalone app, and five years after removing messaging functionality completely from the central app, Facebook might be gearing up to reintegrate Messenger into the main Facebook app (via The Verge).

The news comes from app researcher Jane Manchun Wong, who found a rudimentary "Chats" section in the Facebook mobile app. Whereas before the Messenger button would cause you to leave Facebook and open the Messenger app, Wong discovered that Facebook appears to be testing a new "Chats" area in the app. As of now, this area only contains basic chat functionalities, and lacks reactions, call support, photo support, and more.


Facebook is bringing the Chats back to the app for preparing integrated messagingTip @Techmeme pic.twitter.com/LABK7qrk0e - Jane Manchun Wong (@wongmjane) April 12, 2019
The change follows news that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg wants to integrate the company's three messaging services -- Facebook Messenger, Instagram messaging, and WhatsApp -- into one "underlying messaging infrastructure." Each app will continue to exist following this update, but they will become interoperable so that a Facebook user can send an encrypted message to a WhatsApp user, and vice versa.

According to Wong, this means that Facebook will also keep the separate Messenger app around even after it adds chat functionality back into the main Facebook app, because they will "serve different markets."

All of the Facebook messaging services integration is believed to be an effort to keep people within the Facebook ecosystem and away from rival texting apps like Apple's iMessage.

Update: Facebook has provided MacRumors with the following statement: "We are testing ways to improve the messaging experience for people within the Facebook app. Messenger remains a feature-rich, stand-alone messaging app with over a billion people using it monthly to connect with the people and businesses they care about most. We do not have any additional details to share at this time."

Article Link: Facebook Potentially Planning to Bring Messenger Back to Main Facebook App [Updated With Statement]
 

iReality85

macrumors 6502a
Apr 29, 2008
863
1,610
Upstate NY
Definitely in an attempt to push more people into using Facebook and Messenger instead of just stand alone messenger... Just keep scrolling
Exactly right.

I hardly use FB anymore, but on occasion I do use FB messenger since people do contact me through that.

If FB decides to merge messenger back into the main app, that guarantees I won't be logging in.
 

QuarterSwede

macrumors G3
Oct 1, 2005
9,146
1,080
Colorado Springs, CO
Also: Totally different Facebook App design if that's also iOS. That's a BIG design change moving the Nav bar to the top.

Not sure if that will be great fun from a reachability standpoint if it happens.
I wouldn’t put too much thought into that. They moved it to the bottom for that exact reason when the iPhone X came out.
 

HacKage

macrumors 6502
May 14, 2010
414
698
I disabled my FB account and deleted the app a while back, and it told me that I can still use Messenger which has actually been quite helpful. If they force me to use the main app and have an active account instead of a standalone one then I will fully delete it. There is nothing there worth keeping.
 

autumnpatchouli

macrumors member
Oct 21, 2014
52
53
Central USA
I’ve attempted to leave FB many times. Yet businesses & many other people & services direct you to their FB page for more info. I find it handicaps me not to be on it. That said, I use Firefox w/ their container activated to limit my exposure. I rarely post, I have almost no personal info on my page, & no current posts on my page. It’s simply a resource.
 
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H3LL5P4WN

macrumors 68020
Jun 19, 2010
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Pittsburgh PA
Also: Totally different Facebook App design if that's also iOS. That's a BIG design change moving the Nav bar to the top.

Not sure if that will be great fun from a reachability standpoint if it happens.
That's how it's laid out on robotphones. Not that exact design, mind you, but with navigation at the top. It's horrid.

Apparently green bubble peasants aren't dexterous enough to be able to interact with the GUI without triggering their precious bottom buttons.
 

elmateo487

macrumors 6502a
Jun 12, 2008
703
325
Also: Totally different Facebook App design if that's also iOS. That's a BIG design change moving the Nav bar to the top.

Not sure if that will be great fun from a reachability standpoint if it happens.
The whole screen might be swipe-able to move between tabs, which would be the only way this makes sense. But yeah, I agree, this is suspect.
 

lunarworks

macrumors 68000
Jun 17, 2003
1,659
3,782
Toronto, Canada
Looks like their original plan backfired. People started using Messenger exclusively.
It’s way too late now. Messenger has gotten cluttered as well.
Yup. I only have Messenger installed on my phone. The Facebook app would regularly cache 500+ MB of garbage without an option to clear it.
 
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v0lume4

macrumors 68000
Jul 28, 2012
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That's how it's laid out on robotphones. Not that exact design, mind you, but with navigation at the top. It's horrid.

Apparently green bubble peasants aren't dexterous enough to be able to interact with the GUI without triggering their precious bottom buttons.
Can't tell if you're joking. Peasants? Robotphones?

Come on over, the water is fine!
 
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jdawgnoonan

macrumors 6502
Apr 22, 2007
358
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Clive, Iowa
I have always refused to install the Messenger app as I resented Facebook deciding to try to force the installation of a second app. Today, I don’t even install Facebook on my phone; I just use the web site.
 
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Macaholic868

macrumors 6502
Feb 2, 2017
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I said at the time making messages it’s own app would be a bad idea. I don’t use Facebook anymore but I keep the Messenger App because I have family members who, for whatever reason, refuse to just send a text or group text message. One of them works for Google. You’d think he would know better. LOL!!!