Facebook Messenger: Give in, or say goodbye
Last month, Facebook announced that users would need to download a separate Messenger app if they wanted to continue exchanging messages on their phone. (Our story: engt.co/1mWcRv8)
The social media juggernaut says the goal is to make Messenger "the best mobile messaging experience possible," but for the most part, this shift has angered users who don't want to be forced into using yet another app. It currently has a 1.5-star rating in the iOS App Store accompanied by lots of negative comments throughout Twitter, ironically.
Facebook posted a statement this week primarily aimed to assuage concerns about the app's privacy rules and to reiterate why the company thinks this move is great. There's little hope that Facebook will reverse its decision and like many other changes, Facebook generally assumes users will acclimate eventually. (Facebook's statement: engt.co/1u153xB)
My take? I'm not a fan of having to use multiple apps to use a single service (*cough* Foursquare), nor is there a real incentive to use it in my opinion. When it comes to communication, I like to streamline how I talk to people one-on-one and on my own time and terms: by email, text, or Twitter. So I've decided to part ways and not use Facebook's messaging feature on desktop or mobile.
What's your take? Have you switched over to the Messenger app or given up entirely? Or, are there options we're not thinking of, like third-party apps? Sound off below!
Update: Some folks have noticed a rather interesting irony, that we asked you to come off our post to the forums to voice your opinion, sort of like Facebook asking you to use a separate app. We didn't even think about that. Unfortunately, Engadget's comments and forums aren't integrated right now, but rest assured we're working on it. So, we're sorry about the confusion and welcome your feedback, anytime!
If they can't give me a reason why it benefits me to take up more space on my phone and have two separate apps, then I know they did it for their own gain. It's a free app, so that's their prerogative, just like it's mine to decide I don't need FB messenger on my phone.
Install - done - Hello, can I use Push notifications - no. - OK...
Well, that didn't hurt too much.
Moments later, I see new message indicator in FB app, I switch to Messenger...
"Hello, you didn't enable push notifications, please enable them" - No! - Ok.
Well, that's weird, I thought I already declined that, let's try focusing the app again
"Hello, you didn't enable push notifications"... Ummm, no means no, I simply don't want chat notifications on my phone. Let's see who's smarter.
Focus on Messenger again - "Hello, you didn't enable push notifications... " -Ok, enable them -Hi, this is IOS, do you want to enable notifications for Messenger? -No -Ok.
Got you, sucker!
Let's focus Messenger again.
Now, I've got a full-screen explanation, drawing me a picture on how to enable push notifications in IOS. Ok, let's turn the damn thing on and disable the notifications in the app.
Oh, there are two options:
- I can disable my notifications for an hour or
- I can disable my notifications until 8am tomorrow
I chose the option #3, to uninstall the spammy piece of crap.
I went to mobile FB site in my browser, tapped on my inbox, and placed the bookmark to that page on my launcher, riiiight on the place the late Messenger used to be. Works like a charm and guess what - no DINGGGGGG! sounds!
I want to hear when my partner or family calls or texts. Or work. But my facebook messages? I deal with those on my own time and when I feel like it. I have no desire to be bugged by it when I'm not in the mood to talk.
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Anyway, I'm not sure if it's already done, but I think Google planned to decouple Hangouts from Google+, so that would be one less roadblock for adoption.
Other than that, I would consider Telegram as an alternative.
FB needs to dogfood their employees like they used to... One company. One app. I removed all FB apps and will just use mobile Chrome on my phone and check in once or twice a day. I now have much more free time.
If FB brings back a single app, I MIGHT come back.
“the other thing that we’re doing with Messenger is making it so once you have the standalone Messenger app, we are actually taking messaging out of the main Facebook app. 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.”
I think it really makes sense and I like how much faster I can start or reply to a conversation.
As for people complaining about the permissions it's just people who don't understand how mobile apps work. If you want to take a picture from the Messenger app you have to give the app access to the camera. If you want to make a voice call from the Messenger app you have to give the app access to the microphone. This doesn't mean Facebook is listening to and watching everything you do.
I might be all for the app if someone including facebook themselves even gave one reason to download it. So far you have to have a separate app for something that was already implemented nicely into the original app. Even testing it on the girlfriend's phone shows zero difference in speed minus the fact of opening a seperate app so that takes a little longer now.
Sell me on the app please because I, like many others, are confused on anything to gain here.
I do use facebook to chat but the permissions and integration with a phone that facebook enforces don't sit too well.
The syncing of contacts lists, and facebook's access to messages, calls and contacts is a bit alarming and unnecessary.
If anything, this will probably lead to me slowing down use of facebook because I won't be accessing it via my phone, and using other alternatives.
I'm not thrilled with it, and if they roll it back in, I'll likely uninstall the separate app.
I use it very little and tend to communicate more through Hangouts or SMS, but on the occasions when I did get a FB message, it was a pain either going into the mobile browser version, or getting to a computer.
I did try to nerf it the best I could, however. I do not have it log me into chat, and I set up a few other options so I only get dumped into the app when I need to.
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