Facebook Messenger for Android will allow sign up with just a phone number

Today, Facebook has announced that its Facebook Messenger application for Android will allow signups via just a name and phone number rather than a Facebook account. When a non-Facebook user signs up, the app will import their contacts and then allow them to start conversations with them.

According to TechCrunch, Facebook's mobile product manager, Peter Deng, will formally reveal the update at Le Web later today.

This is potentially a great move for smartphone users who don't want to create a Facebook account but would like to interact with friends in a simple way without using other apps, such as WhatsApp, that seem to come in and out of popularity. However, it could also push non-Facebook users to join Facebook once given the taste of some of the advantages.

Facebook says the updated app for Android will be available today and Messenger accounts will become available over the next few weeks. Non-Facebook signups will also be coming to iOS soon and feature phones according to Deng.

Sources: Facebook, TechCrunch

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32 Comments

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warwagon said,
So what if I give my phone my friends first and last name and his phone number? What happens then?

I'm 99.93423513% sure that when you give it your phone number, it'll send you a verification text to make sure the number is yours.

...if you had access to your friend's physical phone then I guess you could set up a Facebook Messenger account under his number.
Don't do that though. Don't be evil.

I like the Android version over the iOS version. It works not only as a messenger app but as an sms one too. For someone as distracted as I am it's good to have everything in one place.

sanctified said,
I like the Android version over the iOS version. It works not only as a messenger app but as an sms one too. For someone as distracted as I am it's good to have everything in one place.

Can you try to explain to me what the difference is?
I almost have a feeling, but I'm inclined to know instead of guessing...

Like... Do the messages sent via FB Messenger get stored in the stock SMS app or something?

GS:mac

Glassed Silver said,

Can you try to explain to me what the difference is?
I almost have a feeling, but I'm inclined to know instead of guessing...

Like... Do the messages sent via FB Messenger get stored in the stock SMS app or something?

GS:mac

The opposite, the ams you receive get stored and displayed in the messenger app.

Glassed Silver said,

Can you try to explain to me what the difference is?
I almost have a feeling, but I'm inclined to know instead of guessing...

Like... Do the messages sent via FB Messenger get stored in the stock SMS app or something?

GS:mac

If i'm not mistaken, this also works on iOS, it might just not work exactly the same.

Basically, when you press the new message button on the app, start typing someone's name. Bob for example would show up as a facebook contact and it would also show his phone number as a separate contact.

If you send a facebook message to his phone number it'll go to his SMS app and would show a different phone number (I'm assuming one belonging to Facebook). He can then text you back and it would show up on your facebook app rather than it going to your SMS app.

MidTxWRX said,

What is a blackberry?

the best messaging smartphone, very popular in many third world countries, its secure, aceptable price and bring savings in data usage. It was popular in the US until everyone went itard

eilegz said,

the best messaging smartphone, very popular in many third world countries, its secure, aceptable price and bring savings in data usage. It was popular in the US until everyone went itard

*Was* the best, emphasis on the past tense. Developers usually don't pay attention to companies that don't deliver anything on time, not even the software development kits. Usually takes them like a year to react, and by then, its already too late. Corporate irresponsibility at its best.

Also, android holds the largest marketshare, not to mention it has much more business productivity and collaboration tools that you only dream of having in a blackberry.

"When a non-Facebook user signs up, the app will import their contacts and then allow them to start conversations with them."

Does this mean that it sends all your contacts to facebook?

Xenon said,
"When a non-Facebook user signs up, the app will import their contacts and then allow them to start conversations with them."

Does this mean that it sends all your contacts to facebook?

Nope, just into the app.

xstex said,

Nope, just into the app.

I'd believe this, if it wasn't Facebook. I would be willing to bet that Facebook collects this kind of information as well any anything you send through the app. I highly doubt Facebook would provide such an application without data mining being at the heart of it.

Facebook is what you make of it. Despite all of the annoyances of the newly added aggressive ads, and the farmvilles, once you remove all those layers of the artichoke you are left with a really decent messaging platform that is the best as far as cross-platform compatibility. Facebook has done well with messenger. I wish I could say it has done well in other areas, but messenger is good.