Facebook Messenger is a brand new iPhone app from Facebook that lets you send and receive text messages to and from your friends on Facebook. Using push notifications you can use the the new Facebook Messenger app as a pseudo replacement for SMS Text Messaging, and save a few dollars especially when traveling abroad. The app is quite simple in nature yet boasts interesting features that make it powerful & useful.
Unlike the chat pane on the Facebook website, with Facebook Messenger pretty much all your friends who have the app installed are online and avaialble at all times. No need to check for a green dot. Thanks to push notifications, just check for a mobile iPhone icon next to their name. If you and your friends all have the new app, you will save on text messaging costs.
If you don’t wanna be bothered with instant notifications, the Messenger app lets you switch your alerts from instant to “off for 1 hour” or “off until 8:00am” for a digest style notification.
Before sending a message you can enable your location in the message. Just check the little envelope triangle to turn it to the blue color. That means now everyone will get the message with your GPS location attached. When your receive a message in the Facebook Messenger app that contains a little pin icon, it means that person has disclosed their location to you. Tap the message and a map opens up to show the exact address. Tap the View Full Map link for a full sized map where you can pan around. The blue location arrow in the message field is very small as well and close to the send button, making it a somewhat prone to mistakes, if you have larger fingers. Overall this GPS location information can be great for finding your peeps around town while you chat with them.
You can also attach a photo to your messages in the app. Pick from either Take Photo or Choose Photo and you will be able to add an attachment to you messages. Videos are not supported right now. Send messages to multiple friends to start a group chat.
Finally, all the messages, attachments and location info you have in the Facebook Messenger iPhone app all show up on the Facebook website as well, so you can see them in real time.
There is no Facebook Messenger app for the iPad, as there is yet no Facebook app for the iPad, although it is rumored to be on the way. Having a standalone messaging app for Facebook may seem a bit redundant, and I really wish this feature was just added to the existing Facebook iPhone app. But overall this is a very good app and works fast. So, grab the new Facebook Messenger iPhone app and make yourself more accessible to the world.
Sidenote: A previous iPhone app by the same name of Facebook Messenger, has now been renamed to fone pro in the App Store, probably due to some legal issues.
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