Zoom may be grabbing all the headlines lately (for better or worse), but it’s hardly the only option for making video calls over the internet. Microsoft has Skype. Google has Hangouts. And Facebook has Messenger — which is now available as a desktop app.

You can now download Facebook Messenger from the Microsoft Store or Mac Store to run it as a standalone app without relying on a web browser or mobile device.

Facebook notes that there’s been a 100-percent increase in people using Facebook Messenger for voice and video calls over the past month… which isn’t surprising at a time when millions of people around the world are staying at home to help slow the spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.

For the most part the desktop app works like the browser version of Facebook Messenger. But as a standalone app it could be easier to use while multitasking — your operating system’s task switcher will show FB Messenger as its own app rather than as a browser page. You also get native notifications.

The app has an optional dark mode theme, supports group video calls, and all of your chats are synchronized across platforms so you can pick up where you left off on a different device.

One thing that had me confused for a few minutes though? There’s no download link in Facebook’s announcement — because it looks like the only way to download the app is from the Apple or Microsoft app stores.



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7 Comments

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  1. Using it on Windows. Works well to keep me connected to my friends and family during this very isolated times.

  2. Just what I need, data mining in my root filesystem.
    Jitsi is video conferencing that respects your freedom, including the freedom to host it yourself. It works well alongside Matrix for a complete contemporary communications suite that doesn’t think you’re a product.

    1. Meanwhile you in another post (https://liliputing.com/2020/03/xiaomis-redmi-k30-pro-is-a-flagship-phone-with-a-starting-price-of-425-in-china.html#comments):

      “Morals? Morals are relics of a bygone age where clueless people with weak minds made up oppressive rules based on superstitions and lies. Freedom? Look at what all this freedom has you, it’s consumed itself and now you’re a bunch of disgusting pathetic losers on the global stage. And any […] emphasizing “freedom” is living in the past and incompatible with the way the world works. Man up and get the”

      Now I’m just a bit confused which of the two is the real you. Either way, you seem like a my way or the highway type of guy to me. 😉

      1. Over there I was attempting to convey the state of contemporary smartphone flamewars. Those are things other people have argued, and which I don’t agree with.
        Personally, I prefer software that does what I tell it and leaves me and my computers alone. But there’s almost none of that among phone operating systems, and what we do have isn’t amazing or popular, so trying to argue against xaiomi shills is like trying to knock down a brick wall with your face.