Messenger is 10 years old
. Facebook’s app sprang to life in August 2011, just a few months after the company acquired group messaging app Beluga and reworked it into the beginnings of the app we know today.
You’ll probably remember the hoo-ha seven years ago when Facebook took messaging out of the main Facebook app, to force users into the dedicated Messenger. Well, it looks like that’s about to get reversed.
As Bloomberg reported at the start of this week:
Some users, including those in the U.S., will be able to place voice or video calls from the Facebook app beginning Monday. The new feature is just a test, but it’s meant to reduce the need to jump back and forth between Facebook’s main app and its Messenger service, said Connor Hayes, director of product management at Messenger.
Facebook also started testing
a limited version of Messenger’s inbox in the core Facebook app last fall….
The move represents a shift for Messenger from being just an app to being a service layer across all the company’s products. Oculus, Portal, and the like can all tap into Messenger without pushing users off to the actual app.
When Messenger boss Stan Chudnovsky joined us for a live Geekout Twitter Space yesterday to mark Messenger’s 10th birthday
, he was keen to point out that this doesn’t mean an end to the dedicated Messenger app.
And while he played down any suggestion that this means there’s less place in Facebook’s future for separate Instagram messaging features and WhatsApp, it does kind of suggest that Facebook’s ongoing efforts to make its messaging services interoperable behind the scenes might be about more than just allowing you to do things like message a Messenger user from Instagram’s own service.
Why duplicate all that messaging effort across the company? Especially as the unspoken reasoning for tying its messaging services together is to make it harder for a government to break up Facebook.