Facebook removing chat from its apps in favor of Facebook Messenger

Facebook has decided that its users have to chat with each other via the stand alone Facebook Messenger app, rather than from the main application. TechCrunch reports that iOS and Android users will start to receive messages soon on their Facebook apps that chat options will soon be gone from the main app.

Facebook recently launched its Messenger app for Windows Phone.

The story quotes a recent statement from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg that offers an explanation on the change:

And the reason why we’re doing that is we found that having it as a second-class thing inside the Facebook app makes it so there’s more friction to replying to messages, so we would rather have people be using a more focused experience for that.

The article says that iOS and Android users in Europe will start to receive in-app messages alerting them to the change today and that all iOS and Android users will eventually be forced to download Messenger to continue chatting with their friends.

The article does not state if these changes are coming to the Windows Phone or Windows 8 apps. Facebook did launch a Messenger app earlier this year for Windows Phone but Microsoft is currently in charge of developing the Facebook app for the OS; we have contacted Microsoft to see if Facebook's changes will affect the Windows Phone version.

Facebook shut down the stand alone Messenger app for Windows desktop users in March; the company would not comment to Neowin at the time if it planned to launch a stand alone Messenger app for Windows 8.1.

Update: The Verge reports that Windows Phone and tablet users will still be able to chat inside their main Facebook apps.

Source: TechCrunch | Image via Facebook

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What I don't like about this is that the Facebook Messenger app doesn't support multi-window on my Note II. So when chatting and watching a video, I have to go to touch.facebook.com and chat there.

Annoying enough that we have to have a second app already to properly manage Facebook Pages from an app - why isn't that just built-in to the main one?

It's good to see that this change will not affect Windows Phone users. I don't want to install a seperate app just because I chat with few people from time to time. Less apps - less clutter, better working environment and experience.

The truth is that Windows Phone is the ONLY phone which can handle the full Facebook app.
On WP, Facebook messaging is integrated into OS via backend. Your fb account is linked to your main MS account on the cloud servers. That's also why you get Facebook messaging integrated alongside SMS, and pushed to you.
The iPhone and Android apps are just bolt ons and need to constantly poll to notify you of new messages, killing the battery. That's why FB had to release lightweight new apps, and why on.WP we don't need them.
Sad day for iPhone and Android (and Facebook). Happy day for Windows Phone.
http://www.theguardian.com/tec...ause-of-iphone-battery-woes

FB Messenger chat heads feature is quite nifty, I'm for this change for not only that, but also having a dedicated messaging service.

I'm sorry but this is just silly. I have the Messages pane pinned to my start screen and that works great enough for me. I find the separate app pointless. Hope the phone remains unchanged. But it'll probably change with the official FB app from FB in WP 8.1.

Sigh. Have to keep this installed as well know. For some reason, people can't be bothered to talk through Skype even though they are obviously online and have it running, and prefer Facebook for that sort of thing. Go figure.

I'm actually for this change. I use Facebook Messenger already, and find it annoying when somebody chats to me and I get notifications from both the messenger client and the facebook client.

I wish I could block all apps on facebook, but they just make it harder.
And all these silly invitation to play games .... aargh, I wish I could block all of them,
once for all.

They both fight each other anyway. I often got message alerts twice. It's a nightmare.

And on Windows Phone. LOL. God Facebook please do something for WP :/

Joswin said,
They both fight each other anyway. I often got message alerts twice. It's a nightmare.

And on Windows Phone. LOL. God Facebook please do something for WP :/


No issues here either. Perhaps you're confusing the built-in Microsoft-Facebook integration?

Not the Windows Phone version of Messenger. Of Facebook. Or Facebook Beta. I get messages twice. Once in Messenger and again in the FB apps. They don't seem to sync with each other either so they remain unread unless you view in both apps.

That's what I want Facebook to do. Show some love for WP, after using the app in iOS it feels like 2008 on my Lumia :(

This, very annoying :(
Often my WP8 messages notifications show hundreds if unread messages, because of a few conversations on facebook.
More then once I havent noticed normal text messages being sent to me because of this mess.
Also messages you send through the messaging FB chat, are not synced anywhere else.

And worst part is, the build in messaging FB chat receives messages faster than Microsoft's Facebook app.

All in all, this could've been done a lot better.

Joswin said,
Not the Windows Phone version of Messenger. Of Facebook. Or Facebook Beta. I get messages twice. Once in Messenger and again in the FB apps. They don't seem to sync with each other either so they remain unread unless you view in both apps.

That's what I want Facebook to do. Show some love for WP, after using the app in iOS it feels like 2008 on my Lumia :(


So you do realize that you essentially have two Facebook clients running? Disable the Microsoft-Facebook integration in Messenger and be done with it.

Xenosion said,

So you do realize that you essentially have two Facebook clients running? Disable the Microsoft-Facebook integration in Messenger and be done with it.

Can just disable FB chat in the messaging hub options :p

Still kinda sucks though, I prefer the messaging hub when on the move over fb app (plus its 10 times faster/less battery consuming)

good! they should remove chat from the website version as well and make people use the app

they should also remove the function of viewing photos and launch an app for viewing photos

If that's the case...why do they need to be separate apps...? Plenty of apps have installed multiple icons to launch different features of the same application. I don't see why Facebook can't just do that.

I don't have any problem with the size of the app or anything like that (I haven't had a personal complaint about storage availability since the 90s, so I'm nothing but amused by people who still to this day whine about the size of an app).

It seems Facebook just loves to change for the sake of change. So many of their changes seem so pointless. Maybe they're afraid of becoming stale.

I see no reason for why they feel the need to force people to waste space to install another app to do what the one they already had could do. Are they just trying to push people away from facebook all together?

Well I'll use myself as an example. I have both the apps but I actually feel like the FB app gets in the way when I just want to message. So I just always use the messenger app which is obviously less cluttered and easier to get to.

drazgoosh said,
Well I'll use myself as an example. I have both the apps but I actually feel like the FB app gets in the way when I just want to message. So I just always use the messenger app which is obviously less cluttered and easier to get to.

I agree. Facebook Messenger is also data friendly. The Facebook app will start loading stuff from your news feed even if all you are doing is responding to a message. For some people on cellular data that is either capped or slow or both capped-and-slow, having a separate Facebook Messenger app is better.

We're talking about megabytes here, but couldn't this also allow them to reduce the size of the FB app if it means they no longer have to waste extra space with unnecessary code? Most people I know have both installed anyway.

dead.cell said,
We're talking about megabytes here, but couldn't this also allow them to reduce the size of the FB app if it means they no longer have to waste extra space with unnecessary code? Most people I know have both installed anyway.

Sure, if you have a cheap data plan and/or are in an area with fast wireless Internet its only megabyte. Some people who do not have access or cannot afford that luxury might say "a whole Megabyte!?!?!" If you use messenger often, opening the main FB app inadvertently loads the news feed and is unnecessarily, those megabytes add up.

But thats just a hypothetical #thirdworldproblems. Hmmm... I feel like I may be flamed for that.

Why can't it just stay as is? It's not a second class thing - it's a "does what it says on the tin" thing. It allows you to send messages. I'd rather flick through my news feed and check my messages in the same app, personally.

Well, it might be so they just have to maintain 1 app for messaging. They probably concluded that maintaining two apps with the same functionality wasn't good for them. Meanwhile, a lot of folks actually only use the Messenger app. I'm more of a Facebook Messenger user than a Facebook user myself.

Sorting out Push notifications between the two apps was probably another layer of complexity that they wanted to not have to deal with anymore. They seemed to have had it working where if the messenger app is installed, that is where messenger notifications lead you but it seemed like a setup that could be prone to error. Not sure...

The main client is terrible for messaging, so it's completely understandable. Businesses don't want to be giving their users a second-rate service, as it hurts the brand.

Brian M. said,
Why can't it just stay as is? It's not a second class thing - it's a "does what it says on the tin" thing. It allows you to send messages. I'd rather flick through my news feed and check my messages in the same app, personally.

This might be the first step in integrating WhatsApp down the line. Think of it like this, get people using or thinking of messaging as it's own thing/app and not part of the overall FB experience. Then do what MS did with Skype, and start to integrate FB messaging into WhatsApp. Then when the time is right just move everyone over, toss in video calling and all that stuff into WhatsApp and there you go.

McKay said,
Im still mourning the loss of SMS integration.

Yeah that was a sad day when that happened. I still don't know why they removed that function, they already had the app!