Facebook Messenger may soon get a big taste of Material Design on Android

by: Jimmy WestenbergJanuary 20, 2016

Facebook Messenger

Ever since Google unveiled Material Design at I/O 2014, we’ve seen thousands of developers, big and small, bring the new design guidelines to their apps and games. One group of developers that have been doing a great job at not adhering to the Material Design guidelines are none other than the folks at Facebook, who have neglected to bring any sort of cohesive design language to their Android apps over the past few years. That actually, hopefully might be changing sometime soon, according to a user on Reddit.

In a server side update sent out to Facebook’s Messenger application on Android, one Reddit user was lucky enough to receive a full Material version of the app. Okay, it’s not a complete revamp on the design front, but it’s definitely a start. As you can see from the screenshots attached below, Facebook looks to have added a FAB (floating action button) so users will more easily be able to compose messages. Tapping the FAB will bring up a series of bubbles that will let you search, add contacts, create groups and make calls. One other notable change in the new version is the switch to a toggle instead of a check box to turn on the Chat Heads feature of the app.

material2-16x9-1080pRelated: 10 awesome examples of material design32

Facebook appears to be testing this update on just a select number of users at this point, but we surely hope the social networking giant rolls it out to more users in the near future. What are your thoughts? Do you like the Material Design enhancements, or are you fine with the current version? Be sure to tell us your thoughts in the comments.

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  • CJ

    About time tbh.

  • Mohamed Salim

    at last now they just bring COMLETE material design to the Facebook app like TURNING the UGLY black notification bar a different colour not just BLACK I want it to be colourful not just 1 colour 98% of apps on my phone use material design ALSO in the notification bar like changing it colour

  • Mohamed Salim

    The reason why the notification bar colour should be the same as the app is that it makes the notification bar look like its part of the app not separate from it

  • Kiss my Asthma

    Facebook is one of the worst apps on Android hands down, it’s not even funny at this point. Starting with the design, that is so outdated it’s ridiculous, and ending with the countless bugs plaguing the app, not to mention the battery and resource hog that it is. If I wasn’t forced to use Facebook I would drop it in a heartbeat, also I don’t want to use the browser version as I think that it is even worse, if that’s even possible. At this point Facebook needs to scratch off its Android app and rethink it from the ground up.

    • kogli

      I uninstalled the official Facebook app and switched to the browser version, because, not to a big surprise of mine, my phone doesn’t lag anymore and has a better battery life.

      I actually considered developing my own Facebook app alternative with material design and without all the unneccessary bullsh*t that the official app is flooded with, but they dropped all their API, so I ended up having to cancel the project. Sad.

      • Kiss my Asthma

        The thing is, Facebook has become so indispensable to many people that no matter what they do, their app remains at the top spot, so I think that at this point they only care about milking this cow for all it’s got, and unless their popularity starts to drop or people stop using their app, they won’t be rewriting the app anytime soon (which pisses me off considering the huge chunk of ad money they make from mobile specially, Android.) I would love to use something like the well designed google plus app, but the lack of popularity makes it almost impossible.

        • Nik

          It’s so sad that social network so well built and engineered is so unpopular, G+ is so polished and smooth

          • Tjaldid

            But they have that stupid animation for when you scroll down which ruined it for me

    • Morten Ulv

      This is about messenger though, which is great!

      • Vinicius Lima Silva

        I don’t think that Messenger is really great, but they have the most useful feature that a messaging app can have:

        The float chat icon. Really, every app should have a way to be checked and answered without you having to leave the main app you are looking.

  • Enquad

    I apparantly already got the update.

  • Armand Bernard

    I’d like it if they fixed their calling and video calling functions. Skype’s doesn’t work on data, so I can’t really use it at my current place cause there’s a 2 second lag between and the person I’m calling (both ways).

  • Any bets it’ll take another 6 months at least to get to everybody and even then it’ll be half-arsed and inconsistent+drab ??

  • ADofCLE

    You need to get your ads under control! I can’t even read the damn article without the page jumping all over the place, because your shitty fucking ads keep going full page or randoming generating huge ads at the top or bottom of the page moving it so I can’t even see the article.

    • Armaan Modi

      Browsing on mobile is a horrible experience. :'( Try using a PC or their app.

      • ADofCLE

        I don’t frequent here often, mainly because the ads, so I don’t want to waste the space on my phone for an app that I won’t use often. I also don’t like turning on my PC, because it’s trash.

        • Armaan Modi


    • sosarozay300

      the page jumps so you can “accidentally” click on the ads

  • Armaan Modi

    I always see updates for this app but there are no changes. :3

  • Tjaldid

    They need one more icon in the topbar it is so annoying to look at it

  • Robert Christopulos

    Actually,I want to address several issues here. The jumpiness that someone mentioned is only because the site had not finished loading. A faster tablet would have minimised, or eliminated this. Second,I don’t I particularly have any problems with Facebook except that it’s not particularly easy to follow a thread you might be keeping up with. As far as Messenger is concerned, I just love it. I can make, and receive calls and video calls just by going into the app, and placing the call, or leaving a message that tells the person on the other end of the line when to expect your call and then placing the call at that time. To receive a call, all you have to do is to pay attention to your notices and accept the call when it comes through.

  • Vinicius Lima Silva

    I sent a email to them, not about messenger only amd tbh it was mainly about the main app. They sucks at developing, making one app that needs it videoplayer to be on fulltime. Really, that is why battery juice just leaks out.

    One more thing, I just hate camera roll. Facebook didn’t notice that we have tons of pics saved on phone so we can make fun of people using facebook own feature of commenting with pics. But I can’t find my pics without spending 5 minutes searching for it. Really facebook, is it so hard to let my own gallery app handle the pics pick?

  • Exare

    I think they need to make the app work properly before they start thinking of changing how it looks. I mean come on now, what sort of app gives you the option to send pictures and then covers them up when you tap on them??

  • Hopeless13

    That “always useless” button…

  • Face…what now?

  • Talon

    4 feb just got this update for like 30 mins then dissapeared