Facebook Messenger updated with voice messaging, VoIP calls also being tested


Facebook Messenger is receiving a sizeable update this evening, introducing thumb-happy texters into the world of real voice messaging (that thing you used to use a phone for). Now, jumping into the application and pressing on the “+” icon will pull up the usual set of messaging attachments with “Record Voice” being the newest option. The recipient can then listen to the recorded message at their leisure (this isn’t push-to-talk).

While some would likely speculate this is Facebook challenging apps like Voxer I must say, sound quality isn’t anywhere near the clarity of Voxer. Facebook Messenger voice messages sound like your typical cellular gibberish. Pity. Still, there’s no beating it if you’ve got your hands full and need to quickly respond to a Facebook buddy.

There’s also talk that Facebook is dabbling in VoIP capabilities for Facebookers in Canada, allowing users to place calls using their phone’s data connection as opposed to cellular voice minutes. Neato. Expect it to arrive stateside in the near future.

[Facebook Messenger on Google Play | via TechCrunch]

Chris Chavez
I've been obsessed with consumer technology for about as long as I can remember, be it video games, photography, or mobile devices. If you can plug it in, I have to own it. Preparing for the day when Android finally becomes self-aware and I get to welcome our new robot overlords.

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  1. They are also asking for permission to :edit your text messages (sms or mms), read your text messages (sms or mms), receive messages (mms), receive text messages (sms) and sendsms messages.

    Is this new??? hmmmmmmm

    1. Uh oh… Guess I won’t be using that feature. The only people that needs to be reading my text messages are Google. They already know everything about me, yet don’t even know who I am.

    2. most of the apps use those permissions. it pretty normal to me.

  2. VOIP services huh? Why do I think Facebook will not take heat for that either? Google probably would. But then again we all know Facebook is on it’s way out the door so they might as well pull something like this on the phone companies first.

    Does anyone have an data on what effect free texting and VOIP apps are having on cell carriers? I have wondered this for a while and found it very interesting.

    1. I think the record a small voice message is a good idea though. It is like sending a text message but better because you can talk in a certain tone and convey what you what better.

    2. how is Facebook on the way out the door? Please, do tell

      1. because it’s in between the door frame heading in the direction that is not in.

    3. OTT Messaging to grow at 42% CAGR and reach 20.3 trillion messages in 2016
      (compared to 9.5 trillion SMS). This will cost carriers $182B in lost
      voice/messaging over next 4 years

  3. So is VoIP US only.. it would be nice if you didn’t assume were from a tiny fraction of the planet.

    1. Guess the rest of you will have to come up with your own unique and free ideas.

  4. Perfect for the $30 T-Mo plan. Hope GV integrates VOIP into it’s service….soon…

    1. already does… download grooveip from google play

      1. Duh, I use that and Talkatone all the time. I mean native VOIP integration in GV.

  5. Oh man, that Justin Crouch guy…his mustache is manly…

  6. Facebook already has a partnership with Skype… does it seem likely they’d integrate it with the current apps or develop an entirely new one? Just some speculation…

  7. Looks like Voxer is toast now- what took FB so long to steal their business?

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