Facebook is Slowly Turning its Independent Messenger App into WhatsApp

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Facebook is Slowly Turning its Independent Messenger App into WhatsApp

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Recently, Facebook came out with a new feature that allows you to log into its Messenger without actually having a Facebook account. The social media giant made this announcement on Wednesday, stating that this move is being done to push Messenger’s count of 700 million users, higher. They said that users in US, Peru, Canada and Venezuela would no longer need a Facebook account to use Messenger.

Users in the mentioned countries can make an account using their names and their phone number only. They can upload their phone contacts to the app. Yes, we know what you’re thinking, this is quite similar to popular instant messaging apps like WeChat and (Facebook-owned) WhatsApp.

With Messenger, we’ve been focused on creating the best messaging experience possible by giving people a fun and easy way to connect and express themselves with friends. With this update, more people can enjoy all the features that are available on Messenger – including photos, videos, group chats, voice and video calling, stickers and more.

Last year in July, when Facebook announced that it will be removing the messaging feature from its mobile app, which will require people to use its standalone Messenger app instead. This forced users to download the Messenger app to chat with their Facebook contacts on their mobiles.

Just a few months prior to this, Facebook had acquired WhatsApp for $19 Billion. Then why, has Facebook been trying to make Facebook Messenger more and more like WhatsApp? It owns both. What difference would remain between the two, which were once entirely different apps?

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The math is simple. Currently, WhatsApp has about 800 million active users, and Messenger has about 700 million monthly users. If added up, the number would outweigh any other competitive instant messaging app. Messaging has become a way of life, and there are many users that use Facebook purely for chatting and talking with friends. This group of users will find the change very welcoming.

Mark Zuckerberg is also on a spree to convert the chat-only app to something more. Messenger has, earlier this year, introduced the payment feature that allows you to make payments through the Messenger interface. He also introduced video calling and location sharing features.

Needless to say, we’re certainly interested to see where the continuously-evolving Messenger finally lands in the near future.

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Rishi Baruah
iGyaan Network's newbie Rishi Baruah is a musician hailing from Mumbai. He plays drums for a Delhi-based band and specializes in Concert Photography. Oh yes, he can cook up a mean four-cheese pizza.