Facebook Messenger chief admits the app has gotten too cluttered

Facebook Messenger has gotten too cluttered, its leader said today. David Marcus, Facebook’s vice president of messaging products, said in a blog post of 2018 predictions today that the company had gone overboard in the past two years as it brought new features to the app.

“Over the last two years, we built a lot of capabilities to find the features that continue to set us apart,” Marcus wrote. “A lot of them have found their product market fit; some haven’t. While we raced to build these new features, the app became too cluttered. Expect to see us invest in massively simplifying and streamlining Messenger this year.”

The company declined to specify which parts of Messenger it now considers clutter.

Marcus joined Facebook to lead Messenger in 2014, shortly before the company spun messaging out of the flagship app. Since then, the app has grown to 1.3 billion monthly users. But along the way, Messenger has transformed from a fast, lightweight messaging app into a bewildering hodgepodge of competing priorities. Since 2014 it has added payments, customer service bots, a gaming platform, and ephemeral stories, among other unloved features. It has also begun inserting ads into the message feed.

The app became so bulky that Facebook felt compelled to build a “lite” version on Android included only basic messaging features. The idea was that in developing countries, Messenger’s diverse array of data-hungry features would overwhelm most people’s cell phone plans. (Among Western users, Messenger Lite has been a critical smash.)

Marcus didn’t say how the company plans to simplify Messenger. (One good place to start: release Messenger Lite on iOS.)

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Comments

Get rid of stories and it’ll be 75% better.

Yea but some stupid narcissist people use it for some reason, at least have an option to disable it and we’ll all be happy

it’s a fucking mess

Shit on Messenger that has 0 use:

Stories
Games
Extensions
Messenger codes
SMS integration

Remove all the crap and it might be worth using again

SMS integration seems useful to me.

That is one useful feature but that’s about it.

Good to know privacy isn’t an issue for some.

so you don’t think your phone company can ready our SMS?

They can, but why would that be a reason to open the doors to everyone?

It’s not necessarily that privacy isn’t an issue for some. People are just nuanced in their views on it.

Not everyone feels the need to live like they’re one false move from someone breaking down their door. While some, unfortunately, live in situations like that some of us have the luxury of sacrificing some privacy for convenience.

If you don’t have this luxury, you really shouldn’t be using a medium like Facebook Messenger, to begin in the first place.

I like the games. I need nit install 150 games and this one is enough

I like the SMS back up feature provided by Samsung. That is the only reason I can never use any other SMS app.

Add conversation personalisation and gif support to messenger lite and you have a winner.

There’s an app for that. It’s called Facebook Messenger

Messenger is bloated AF there are stories, games, extensions etc. It’s also contantly trying to replace your SMS app of choice. Heck I even got ads few days ago. What I’m advocating for is a pure focus on concersation.

You got ads? I’ve been using it for like 3 – 4 years and I never saw on. Are you on Android or iOS?

It has ads on iOS.

On android as far as I am concerned, got ads for the Headspace app (of which I am already a subscriber).

I switched to Android recently and wasn’t aware that Messenger Lite was available everywhere. Just installed it and already love it! A list of chats, a list of contacts, settings. No weird apps or anything.

My favorite part of Messenger is how it creates a new conversation for every new friend you add. It’s a completely useless, time wasting "feature" that no one ever asked for or wanted, but hey, one Messenger dev came up with the idea because he couldn’t think of anything else, and now 1 Billion people have to put up with the garbage clutter and confusion it creates.

Even the basic chat interface is cluttered. After dismissing the Favorites bar for the nth time and having it reappear, I uninstalled the app.

iMessage works beautifully for me. If I don’t text you there, you’re not that important to me.

I switched to Messenger Lite last year and haven’t looked back. It’s a million times better than the bloated "main" version.

I love the big like button so wonderfully placed to be clicked by mistake. It came in handy when a fire killed a lot of people in a club and I was talking (a few minutes after it happened) with a friend who was supposed to be there. He was telling me that some of his friends were inside. And then the Big Like. Thank you, Facebook Messenger, its really great user friendly and smooth!

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