Facebook Messenger has officially slid into Instagram’s Direct Messages with the announcement of an update that merges the two messaging services.
The merge will allow people using Messenger to communicate with those on Instagram without having to download the app – and vice versa.
The rollout also includes more than 10 new features including stickers, Watch Together and a vanish mode that allows users to set messages to automatically disappear after they are seen.
News of the integration first surfaced in 2019 when Facebook revealed plans to merge Messenger, Instagram Direct Messages and WhatsApp.
The company was still in the early stages of the work last year but had set 2020 for when the move would be complete.
Although WhatsApp did not make the cut, Facebook has kept to part of the plan.
‘More than a billion people already use Messenger as a place to share, hang out and express themselves with family and friends,’ Facebook shared in a blog post.
‘That’s why we’re connecting the Messenger and Instagram experience to bring some of the best Messenger features to Instagram – so you have access to the best messaging experience, no matter which app you use.’
The merge was rolled out last month to a few users, but now every Instagram user can update the app for access.
Facebook rolled out an update that merges Instagram with Messenger, providing users with access to a list of features in Direct Messages.
Users have access to new colourful looks for chats, a new list of emojis, the swipe to reply to message option and the ability to chat with friends on Facebook – bringing the messaging services into one platform.
The update includes Message Controls that allows people to decide who can message them directly and who cannot message them at all.
The move also comes as CEO Mark Zuckerburg battles with government regulators who are investigating the possibility of breaking up the social giant.
Facebook recently went in front of Congress, which is investigating the social media site’s acquisition of Instagram and WhatsApp.
However, Zuckerberg is hitting back stating the claims are based on Instagram’s present-day success.
‘It was not a guarantee that Instagram was going to succeed,’ he said.
‘The acquisition has done wildly well, largely because not just of the founders’ talent, but because we invested heavily in building up the infrastructure and promoting it.’
With the merge, it will be more difficult for government officials to break up the social media giant.