Facebook has announced the release of a new Messenger desktop app for group video calls and chats from today, nearly a year after the social networking giant first announced plans to bring dedicated apps to the desktop.
Now more than ever, people are using technology to stay in touch with the people they care about, even when physically apart. Over the past month, we saw more than a 100% increase in people using their desktop browser for audio and video calling on Messenger. Now with apps for MacOS and Windows, the best of Messenger is coming to desktop, including unlimited and free group video calls.
Features of Facebook Messenger App for Desktop:
- Group video calls on a larger screen. Stay in touch with family and friends, join a workout, or host a virtual happy hour.
- Easy to connect. You don’t need to know someone’s email or phone number since all your Facebook friends have Messenger.
- Multitasking. Your chats are easily accessible, and you can pop in and out of the app while doing other things on your computer.
- Notifications. You can receive notifications for new messages, so you can quickly find the chat you’re looking for. But you’re in control — you can choose to mute and snooze notifications.
- Chats sync across mobile and desktop. You’ll never miss a call or message no matter what device you’re using.
- Everything you love about Messenger on a bigger screen. Including Dark Mode and GIFs.
The app isn’t purely about video chats, of course. Those who use it as their primary messaging service can see notifications for new messages, with everything synchronized across all devices they use Messenger on.
In the immediate aftermath of the COVID-19 outbreak, Facebook reported a 70% surge in people participating in Messenger group video calls, while the amount of time spent on those group video calls doubled — and these numbers have been rising sharply.
“Now more than ever, people are using technology to stay in touch with the people they care about, even when physically apart,” wrote Messenger VP Stan Chudnovsky in a blog post. “Over the past month, we saw more than a 100% increase in people using their desktop browser for audio and video calling on Messenger.”