Bloomberg reports that Facebook will add voice and video calling to its main Facebook app, after having moved the features to Messenger in 2014.
Some countries, including the United States, now allow users to make voice and video calls from their Facebook app. Facebook is currently testing this feature. It is intended to reduce the amount of time that users have to switch to the Messenger app.
Messenger and Facebook were once one app. However, in 2014 Facebook separated them and removed Messenger functionality. Customers were required to download the Messenger app in order to send private messages and make phone calls via the Facebook platform.
Facebook also tested adding a limited version to its Messenger app. This will allow users to expand their capabilities without switching to Messenger.
Connor Hayes is Messenger's director of product management. He stated that Messenger is now being considered a service and not a standalone app by Facebook. Hayes stated to Bloomberg that Messenger will be more popular over time. According to Hayes, Messenger is the "connective tissues" that allows people to communicate with each other regardless of their service. Facebook believes that a unified messaging platform will keep users connected to the Facebook ecosystem, rather than alternative services such as iMessage.
Facebook last year combined messaging between Messenger and Instagram, a feature the company plans to add to WhatsApp. Facebook, Instagram Messenger, Messenger and WhatsApp could be more difficult to split if it loses the antitrust case it is currently facing. The United States FTC accused Facebook of being a social media monopoly, and demanded that the company divest Instagram & WhatsApp in order to increase competition.