Two days ago, Facebook announced that it was redesigning its Facebook messenger app for android and some of its major changes involves SMS functionality and creating a more attractive, streamlined experience that the company believes would draw more users to using the app. The new version is said to be rolling out to a limited number of users with a wider release planned for the coming weeks which has no date specified.
Before we advance to downloading the apk version of the redesigned Facebook messenger app, wouldn’t it be nice if we take a look at what’s new in the app?
What’s New In The Redesigned Facebook Messenger
One of the obvious development in the new app is more permission that needed to be accepted before been installed. The new features seem to be holdouts from the previous release. For example, Facebook said they are removing SMS Support but the app still currently wants the ability to read and send text messages. You can see more permissions said to be granted before installing in the screenshot below:
Facebook still requests that you verify your phone number when using the app but I personally do believe that this option is basically to help you in retrieving your account just in case you lose your password. A separate screen invites you to text friends but it really wants you to invite all your contacts into Facebook and use the service as your new way to send text between phones. One of the obvious feature in the new release is that it allows people to message contacts that they aren’t facebook friends with, scanning their list of phone numbers for those with Facebook accounts associated with them and letting users communicate without having to send out a request.
Looking from the new interface experience, the new interface looks more like iOS 7 then holo but its obviously smooth and zippy and I think that’s pretty cool. However, it still looks like an android app even through it doesn’t look like a Facebook app anymore.
The new messenger now also has a tab that makes it obvious to know who is currently active on the social network and also shows whether they are using a mobile device or a web browser. A blue badge also shows who has the messenger app installed and personally, I think this is one of the more delightful addition.
Please be aware that this new features might likely change when a full release is been made.
Downloading Redesigned Facebook Messenger APK App
Before downloading the new version app, there are a few steps you should do. First, you will need to uninstall the previous app on your device. If you do not have a facebook app installed on your device then you are good to go. Secondly, you should visit the Google Play Store and disable auto-update. Messenger internally carries a lower version number than the app currently offered on Google Play, so your phone will want to ‘update’ back to the previous release but if you had done the second step then you are good to go. You can download by clicking here.