Facebook ‘bringing beloved feature back’ after YEARS – it will change how you message pals

FACEBOOK is plotting to resurrect a popular feature of its app that it binned years ago – sort of.

According to a report, Meta, the company that owns the platform, wants to reintegrate Messenger back into Facebook’s main app.


Messenger has been separate from the main Facebook app sinceCredit: AFP

The pair were detached in 2014, with Messenger becoming its own distinct app that users had to install on their devices separately.

The plot to mash them back together again was revealed in a memo from a Facebook executive published by The Verge on Wednesday.

The memo, from Tom Alison who heads up the Facebook app at Meta, urged employees to make the app more like TikTok.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg has publicly blamed his creation’s recent stagnation on the meteoric rise of the Chinese video platform.

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Part of a planned overhaul of Facebook’s main feed would prioritise recommended content from pages and people you don’t follow.

According to the memo, the goal is to turn Facebook into a “Discovery Engine,” similar to TikTok’s wildly successful “For You” feed.

The change would mean that users are shown fewer posts from friends and family in their feeds.

Engineers have also been asked to reintegrate the Messenger and Facebook apps, mimicking TikTok’s messaging functionality.

It’s thought that bringing the pair back together would encourage users to share more content from the “Discovery Engine.”

The memo shows how seriously Meta is taking its struggle against TikTok, which is far more popular among younger users.

After getting the memo, The Verge contacted Alison about the app’s plans.

He acknowledged that the company was “slow to see the competitive threat of TikTok” and that Meta now “sees the video app as increasingly encroaching on its home turf of social networking.”

In February, Meta admitted that Facebook had lost users for the first time in its 18-year history.

In an earnings report, the company delivered a mix of a sharper-than-expected drop in profit, a decrease in users and threats to its ad business that plunged shares some 22 per cent in after-hours trading.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg blamed the popularity of galloping rival TikTok on Facebook’s apparent stagnation.

“People have a lot of choices for how they want to spend their time,” ” Zuckerberg said during an earnings call.

“Apps like TikTok are growing very quickly.”

Already jittery markets have recently punished pandemic-era darlings including Netflix for disappointing results.

Meta got a taste of that after its $10.3billion quarterly profit and daily user-growth fell short of expectations.

Yet the signature Facebook platform also reported losing roughly one million daily users globally between the last two quarters of 2021.

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That’s a tiny number on an app with nearly two billion daily users, but a potentially worrying signal of stagnation.

It hinted that Facebook’s status as the world’s biggest social media app is under threat.

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