Is Facebook working on a “disposable chat” app?

December 18, 2012
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Rumor has it that Facebook is currently testing its own private chat application. The new messenger app is designed to allow users to send photos and messages to each other which, unlike the traditional Facebook chat, will expire after a period of time. The app will be separate from the standard Facebook app, but it will almost certainly integrate with contacts from your account.

The app shares the same concept as Snapchat, a real time picture messaging service which has a time limit on how long content can be viewed before being permanently deleted from user handsets. Snapchat currently sends about 50 million photos between users everyday, so the concept is clearly a popular one. Facebook’s new app is designed to do pretty much the same thing, with communications between users only being available for a specified period of time.

Interestingly, this may be Facebook’s attempt to smooth other controversies about its privacy policies and concerns that it stores ridiculous amounts of personal information. But this does beg the question, given their previous track record of harvesting data, are users really going to trust that Facebook is deleting this content?

So far there’s no confirmed release date for the app, so we will have to wait and see how people respond to this apparent change in direction regarding privacy. What do you think? Is a more secure private message service something you’d use, even if it’s being overseen by Facebook?

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