Facebook has announced that its Messenger app for Android has received a nice update, with a fresh take on the conversation view that looks more, well…conversational. The app also gets support to integrate text messaging right into conversations on some phones from HTC, Samsung and LG.
The new version of Facebook for Android includes a new button in upper right of News Feed quickly shows who’s available to message, the new conversation design and an online status indicator.
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The Messenger app also features a new swipeable pane that looks a lot like Facebook for Android’s drawer system. It allows you to see everyone online at the moment and a favorites section that gives quick access to your most-used contacts.
This emphasis of Messenger via the threaded conversations and quick access to users, is included in Facebook’s updates to its regular Android app as well.
This extended emphasis on messaging (especially the SMS threading) in Facebook’s Android apps indicates that Facebook wants you to be able to use Messenger as your de-facto IM client, if it can enhance the experience enough, and make it accessible enough, it could end up positioning itself as an Android analogue to Apple’s iMessage system. And I don’t think that they would mind that one bit.
The update for Android is available today, and Facebook says that an iOS update will be out ‘soon’ as well.
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