Facebook Messenger may move back to main app

Doris Richards
April 14, 2019

The unreleased feature of the original Facebook app has been discovered by this user.

Researcher Jane Manchun Wong spotted the familiar Messenger logo at the top of the main Facebook app.

Back in the day, Facebook Messenger was built directly into the main Facebook app.

So, what's next? Jane Manchun Wong, who is "not [a] Facebook employee" but does enjoy "reverse engineering apps because it feels like solving puzzles", posted an interesting screenshot to Twitter.

Currently, users have to either download the Messenger app or open it separately on a browser.

Considering this controversial plan that's sending shivers down the spine of privacy advocates while no doubt also facing scrutiny from regulatory bodies around the world, it's certainly not surprising to hear the main Facebook mobile app could regain its messaging functionality before long. This was the original method Facebook used for Messenger before it became a standalone app in 2011. If Facebook unites the three apps, each platform would have the end-to-end encryption that WhatsApp now has, which "protects messages from being viewed by anyone except the participants in a conversation", according to the Times. At the moment, Wong says, the app's new "Chats" feature only offers basic functionality, which means that users chatting through the Facebook app can't do things like make calls or send photos. Just like in WhatsApp, all three apps will support end-to-end encryption. And, given all the bad press following Facebook's seemingly never-ending series of scandals, lumping all these apps together might be a ploy at keeping users locked in and engaged.

"As you would expect, there is a lot of discussion and debate as we begin the long process of figuring out all the details of how this will work", Facebook said in a statement per The New York Times.

Other reports by Iphone Fresh

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