New Facebook Messenger app is simpler, and twice as fast

Facebook Messenger

There are lots of apps you can use to communicate with friends, family and colleagues. These include WhatsApp, Signal, Telegram, Skype, and Facebook Messenger. Messenger was first spun off into its own app in 2011, and since then the social network has added more and more features to it, to the point where it has become bloated, and harder to use.

Realizing this, Facebook has gone back to basics, and redesigned Messenger to make it faster, smaller, and simpler.

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Today sees the first fruits of the company’s labor. Under the codename of Project LightSpeed, Facebook has rebuilt its iOS app from the ground up, and lists the following benefits of the new version:

  • Faster: A faster start time may not matter as much if you only open an app once or twice a day to play a game or watch a movie, but it makes a huge difference when you open an app many times a day to respond to messages from the people who matter most.
  • Smaller: A smaller app means Messenger starts, downloads and updates faster for everyone, including people who use the app on older devices or in areas with lower connectivity where every kilobyte counts.
  • Simpler: We’ve streamlined the app while keeping it rich with features and making it easier for our engineers to build better experiences. For example, we’ve reduced the contact list from 40 versions to one that works consistently across the app. This not only helps with the cognitive load for people, but it also means engineers don’t need to build new experiences from the ground up.

Facebook details exactly how it went about redesigning the iOS app here.

The updated app will start rolling out users today.

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