Facebook Messenger finally has its own desktop app, making it easier to message and video chat with friends and family from your computer. Now, more than ever, staying in touch with friends and family (and work colleagues) is important as the reality of self-isolation takes hold. With that in mind, Facebook decided to expand the ways in which you can access Messenger by bringing it to the Windows 10 desktops.
Stan Chudnovsky, VP of Messenger, has announced that Facebook Messenger is now available as brand new standalone desktop apps for Windows 10 users. It means Messenger can be used without having to rely on a web browser, mobile devices, or the old app designed for Windows 8. Facebook designed this new version for big screens, so you can relax in front of a laptop or focus on your friends and family using a much larger monitor.
The new desktop app offers the same features as the web and mobile versions including dark mode and access to GIFs, but adds a notifications feature which makes finding new messages much quicker if you’re having multiple chats. All three versions of Messenger interact seamlessly, so you can switch between a PC, laptop, phone, or tablet without missing a message or call. Facebook is keen to point out the desktop app offers free and unlimited group video calls while not requiring you know someone’s phone number or email address to contact them. If you are friends with them on Facebook, Messenger chats and video calls will just work.
The launch of a standalone desktop app for Facebook Messenger has been a long time coming, with strong hints that Facebook was working on an app as early as 2016. Facebook later launched a desktop app for Workplace, its collaboration tool, in late 2017. But it didn’t announce Messenger for desktop until last year.
Facebook’s Messenger desktop app joins the increasingly important pool of videoconferencing tools such as Zoom, which is facing backlash for its privacy and security issues. As many of us practice social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, video chat apps are becoming vital tools to keep in contact with friends and family. Facebook finally launching a full version of its Messenger desktop app should make it a little bit easier for users to video chat with their friends.