Facebook reached a new milestone for its widely-dissed Messenger app, which now serves more than 500 million people four months after it was mandated for users.
The world's largest social networking platform is finally moving ahead with its Messenger app, which is now sitting in millions of smartphones. Just a few months after Facebook separated its messaging feature from the core social networking app in August, more than 500 million people have migrated to the standalone Messenger app. The milestone is a great achievement for Facebook, considering the separation attracted strong protests from the people accustomed to sending messages from within the main Facebook app.
Facebook officially confirmed the numbers in a blog post Monday, with the company's director of product management Peter Martinazzi highlighting the pros of using the Messenger app over standard SMS. The standalone mobile app is entirely focused on helping users communicate better, and it offers a seamless and fast mobile messaging experience. Additional features such as sharing photos, videos, stickers and making free calls and group chats are a major part of Facebook Messenger.
"Today more than 500 million people are using Messenger each month and we're more committed than ever to make it the best possible messaging experience," Martinazzi wrote. "This is an exciting milestone but with a half billion people relying on Messenger to communicate and connect, it is also a reminder that there is so much left for us to do."
The announcement comes a few days after CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained the company's decision to mandate Messenger for its users during a public Q&A session last week. He admitted the need to have separate apps for messaging and social networking is a "big ask" but sole focus on individual functionalities can deliver a better overall experience.
Facebook, which serves more than 1.2 billion users, is undoubtedly a popular choice for social networking and the latest milestone for Messenger proves the company is gaining a stronger foothold in the messaging field. Facebook's Messenger app serves the purpose for many users like other apps such as Apple iMessage, Samsung's ChatOn and Facebook's own WhatsApp.
With over half a billion monthly users, Messenger is nearing WhatsApp, which surpassed 600 million monthly active users in August.