Over the next few days, Facebook will stop allowing messaging in its main Android and iPhone apps, and move all their users across the globe to get its dedicated Messenger app. Facebook first started getting users in Europe to use Messenger earlier in April, but after observing “positive outcome” in terms of usage, its rolling out the plan to everyone using Facebook on mobile. Facebook says using the dedicated app is faster by 20% compared to in-app messaging, and for better chat experience we are forced to move you all to get the app for mobile chat.
iPad, feature phone, Windows Phone, Mobile web, Paper, and desktop users can still chat in their main Facebook apps or sites like before, and will be grant from this forced movement for now.
Earlier, users could text from a Messages tab in Facebook’s smartphone apps. They also had the feature to download Messenger, which would turn the Messages tab into a notifications hub and shortcut that would fast-switch users into Messenger when tapped.
Here is the blog post from the Facebook forces users to download messenger for mobile chat:
[quote]“In the next few days, we’re continuing to notify more people that if they want to send and receive Facebook messages, they’ll need to download the Messenger app. As we’ve said, our goal is to focus development efforts on making Messenger the best mobile messaging experience possible and avoid the confusion of having separate Facebook mobile messaging experiences. Messenger is used by more than 200 million people every month, and we’ll keep working to make it an even more engaging way to connect with people.”[/quote]
For some people, there isn’t any big deal to manage two different Facebook apps. Others might have enjoyed the Chat Heads interface that allowed message multi-tasking, so they can easily chat over the top of what they were doing.
But for now, Facebook might be hurting users opinion of itself, and reinforcing the perception that it changes whatever it desires without regards to what users want.