Messenger has been one of the troubled Facebook kids and it might be coming back home. Researcher Jane Manchun Wong was the first one to spot the new feature under the testing phase.
However, even if there is a time where Messenger and all of its features are integrated back into the main Facebook app, Wong doesn't think the company will discontinue the standalone Messenger app. While it may be used to send and receive messages, users will still need to open the standalone Messenger app to do a handful of other things, such as make calls, send photos, or send reactions to messages. In the top right corner, you can see the same Messenger icon that brings you to a chat window right in the main app itself.
It's possible that rolling chat back into the main Facebook app is part of this effort, though it's not clear if or when it will roll out to the general public. "We do not have any additional details to share at this time". Facebook reportedly expects to integrate these services by 2020.
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Facebook is working to interconnect its trio of app of Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram. The company owns Instagram, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger. Over the past few years, there have been privacy concerns from some users and high-profile personalities who have lobbied for for tighter privacy-focused regulations in the wake of security breaches and the Cambridge Analytica scandal. The app is being redesigned by the developers and they are experimenting with the new features of the app.
So far, the Chats feature doesn't allow users to perform more advanced tasks, like reacting to messages, making calls or sending images.
Since that time, Facebook acquired WhatsApp and is now preparing to integrate chat and messaging functions across the two services, as well as with Instagram. It seems that they wanted to do this before.