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You may need Messenger to chat on Facebook, but you no longer need Facebook to chat on Messenger. The social network has just announced Messenger will no longer require users to have a Facebook account in order to join the conversation. All they will need to sign up is a phone number.

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The news had the whole industry raising their eyebrows today, as the change doesn’t seem to go in line with Facebook’s constant struggle to take over the internet with their social network. What’s going on here?

facebook messenger web

It does make sense in the grand scheme of their operations, though. After all, some of Messenger’s features are only available to Facebook users, such as syncing messages across devices and having access to your Facebook contacts – think of it as an endless trial period of sorts. Giving users this capability will help them draw in more potential Facebook users they could later convince to join the real party.

How to sign up for Messenger without a Facebook account

  1. Download and install the Messenger app from the Google Play Store.
  2. Open the Messenger app.
  3. The Messenger welcome screen will now present you with an option that reads “Not on Facebook?”.
  4. Press on the option and you can then sign up with your name, phone number and a photo.
  5. Start chatting it up!

messenger-no-facebook

This new feature has started rolling out to users in the USA, Canada, Peru and Venezuela, so it’s not exactly for everyone just yet. We are sure this new signup option will continue to expand in due time, so stay put if you are not in one of these markets.

I happen to believe this is a good move by Facebook. Messenger will successfully get people to dip their toes into the platform. After all, it is a great communication tool everyone is using, and in this race all that matters is the user base numbers. Aside from regular messages, Facebook Messenger offers video calls, the ability to send money to friends, voice calls, group chats, stickers and more; all for free.

messenger-video-call-carousel

Not bad, right? Now we can finally get our Facebook-hating friends to stay in touch with us via Messenger! By the way, how many of you are still not using Facebook? Will you download the Messenger app now that you don’t need to sign up to the full social network? Hit the comments and share your thoughts with all of us!

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