Not for the first time, Facebook is pushing users toward its Messenger app

Keen to get as many users as it can onto its Messenger app, Facebook has started to warn users of its mobile website that its messaging capability will soon end. It’s not known how many people chat via Facebook’s mobile site rather than the Messenger app, but for some people, for example those with older handsets that struggle with the app, the website is a better option.

When opening the Messenger function on the mobile site, many users are now seeing a message that reads, “Your conversations are moving to Messenger – soon you’ll only be able to view your messages from Messenger.” Other users have reportedly been receiving direct prompts to download the Messenger app from the app store if they don’t already have it.

At the current time, you can dismiss the message by hitting the “x” symbol top right, though TechCrunch reports that the social networking giant is likely to shutter the mobile site’s capability to initiate chats by the end of the summer.

“Nudging” Facebook users toward its messaging app is reminiscent of the company’s strategy two years ago when it told users it was intending to remove the ability to chat via the main Facebook app, at the same time suggesting they download the Messenger app. The plan clearly worked, as the app now has more than 900 million active users, adding a colossal quarter of a billion in 2015 alone.

The Menlo Park company pulled the same move at the start of this year when it removed the ability to photo-sync from its main app, meaning users who wanted to use the feature had to download the company’s then-new image-based Moments app.

As for why it’s pulling chat from its mobile site, Facebook fed TechCrunch with the somewhat predictable line about its desire to give users the “best experience” in messaging. But as we all know, with the company getting serious about monetizing its messaging service, getting more users onto the fully featured standalone app is only going to boost the brand and enable it to charge higher rates when forming partnerships with businesses keen to connect with its burgeoning user base.

Moves are already well underway to build out Messenger to create something far beyond a straightforward messaging app. In April, for example, Facebook officially launched Messenger chatbots that allow users to easily interact with businesses from within the app. Initial partners for the feature include CNN, KLM, the Wall Street Journal, and 1-800-Flowers. The company has also forged Messenger partnerships with the likes of Uber, Lyft, Spotify and Dropbox for additional integrated services.

If you’re happily using Facebook’s mobile site for chat, how do you feel about the company’s decision to dump the option? Sound off in the comments below.

Computing

Paid browsers are the future, and Firefox might offer a better deal than Chrome

Just like Google, Mozilla is planning on offering premium web-browsing services. Unlike Google, however, it seems like Mozilla might have a better strategy for encouraging users to subscribe to its future premium plans.
Social Media

Facebook’s comment-ranking system aimed at taming the dumpster fire

Even by the standards of the internet, Facebook comments are famously awful. Now Facebook is introducing a new comment ranking system to attempt to tackle this problem by promoting quality comments and hiding low quality ones.
Music

Apple Music vs. Spotify: Which service is the streaming king?

Apple Music is giving Spotify a run for its money, but which service is best for you? In our Apple Music vs. Spotify showdown, we compare and contrast all we know about the two streaming music services.
Mobile

Google Maps will now warn you about disasters and tell you how fast you’re going

Google Maps expanded its SOS alerts to include notifications and visualized information regarding disasters. For some users, the app has also added a speedometer, which complements the recently added speed cameras and speed limits feature.
Mobile

Whether you speak best with emojis, GIFs, or words, you can chat with Kik

The easy-to-use Kik has the look and feel of an SMS text messenger, but with plenty of appealing perks. With only a user name as an ID, Kik lets you exchange messages, photos, videos, sketches, emoji, and more with others on the platform.
Smart Home

Facebook says new Portal video-chat devices are coming in the fall

A Facebook executive has revealed the company is gearing up to refresh its video-calling smart displays later this year. The Portal and Portal+ devices launched to lukewarm reviews toward the end of last year.
Social Media

With its latest tool, Facebook is out for blood (donations, that is)

Facebook users in the U.S. will soon start seeing notifications when area blood centers are in need of donations. The newly expanded Facebook Blood Donation tool mixes alerts with details on where to donate, along with how to invite…
Social Media

Here's how to unblock someone on Facebook when you've had a change of heart

Maybe you were a little too hasty blocking that one person on Facebook ... or maybe you just want to do a little spying to see what they're up to. Either way, you can fix the situation easily. Here's how to unblock someone on Facebook.
Social Media

Need a new Identity? Here's how to change your name on Facebook

There comes a time when everyone must change their online name for one reason or another. Check out our quick guide on how to change your name on Facebook in under five minutes without all the expected fuss or digital hoops to jump through.
Social Media

Will this deepfake of a power-hungry Zuckerberg make Facebook rethink fake news?

Just how committed is Facebook to earlier statements on leaving deepfake videos intact but demoted? A fake video of Mark Zuckerberg proclaiming power over your data has lasted for four days on the platform.
Social Media

Here's how to link your Instagram, Facebook accounts for social syncing

Instagram and Facebook go hand in hand. Here's how you can make the most of the superior integration offered by the two social media behemoths, which should help your pics gain more exposure in the long run.
Social Media

These are the best ways to make your own animated GIF to share

Love sharing GIFs with your friends and peers, but wish you could make your own? Here's how to do so in Photoshop, or using a few other methods that don't require you to shell out a premium fee with each calendar year.
Social Media

Facebook will pay to spy on you, but you can make more money elsewhere

Facebook's new Study app will track how you use your phone and provide that data to the social media giant. The company will even pay you for it — but likely not very much, especially compared to the market rate for your personal…
Social Media

Zuckerberg may have known more about Facebook’s privacy scandal than we thought

In the midst of an ongoing investigation into Facebook's Cambridge Analytica privacy scandal, a new report suggests that Facebook founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg may have known about the company's much-criticized approach to privacy.