Facebook Messenger App Only Requires Phone Number for Sign Up

Facebook has announced its first product that does not require a Facebook account to register. The Facebook Messenger for Android, and soon on iOS, will allow users who do not have Facebook accounts to register using just their name and phone number.

The free app is being rolled out on Google Play in selected countries, including Australia, South Africa, Venezuela, and Indonesia. The rest of the world will be able to download Facebook Messenger for free at a later date.

Once registered, the app will gather in the user’s contacts, which they can select by name to create a message or a group message thread. This expanded reach is Facebook’s attempt to compete with SMS, which remains a popular mode of communication in some countries, as well as third-party, free texting apps such as Pinger and WhatsApp, which Facebook is allegedly trying to acquire.

The Facebook Messenger for Android will also run without advertisements, which may entice users who are not sold on paid, ad-supported communication apps.

Source: Facebook, via TechCrunch

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