With Facebook Messenger being one of the most used messenger app on smartphones, users have long wished for the app to be launched on PC. Facebook has now launched an official desktop app for PC and Mac. The app will enable users to chat and also share screens. However, the app is initially available only on the Workplace which is Facebook’s enterprise collaboration software that competes with other business applications.
Facebook’s Workplace now has around 14,000 running businesses while paying $1-$3 per user. With a screen sharing feature, users will be getting everything in one place and the need of using other apps like Skype or WebEx for these purposes will be eradicated. The release of this feature is quite a strategic move which will attract more and more users towards a platform which offers everything in one place.
The download link for the beta version of the Workplace Chat app was hidden inside the help section of Workplace. From there, Workplace users can download the app and use it to remain in touch with their co-workers instead of relying on a browser to maintain tabs for these purposes.
Vanessa Chan, the spokesperson of Workplace said:
“This was one of the most widely requested features by customers, so we built it. The desktop app is still in beta and being tested by Workplace customers who are providing feedback that we’ll use to improve the product before a wider rollout”
The app’s interface
The Workplace Chat app is quite similar to the website’s chat area which is in turn modeled after the Facebook messenger. The app consists of a dashboard where all recent chats of the user are listed. On the right, there is a chat box where messages show up and the bottom consists of a text box along with the option to share images, stickers, emojis, voice clips, files, and other things. One more thing the desktop app offers is desktop notifications which are designed to override any window you are currently working in to keep you updated about your recent messages.
Besides Facebook Gameroom, Workplace is Facebook’s only desktop app so far. Facebook also offered Windows for a messenger app in 2012 but ended up shutting down the project in 2014. The main focus of the Messenger team has been on developing mobile apps and the idea of desktop apps hasn’t been given much attention. However, now that the app has 1.3 billion monthly users, Facebook should move towards expanding its horizon by developing desktop applications.
Scree sharing is a cool feature
Facebook has launched screen sharing in Workplace which has been long demanded by users. Although screen sharing isn’t new for users, Facebook has been quick to introduce this feature in Workplace. On the other hand, Slack introduced the screen sharing feature 4 years after its launch while Workplace did it in one year.
The screen sharing feature is available in the app as well as on the website. Users can now share their entire screen or choose to share a specific program they’re running. This helps users to maintain privacy while sharing their screen if they don’t want the other user to see each and everything they’re doing. This privacy is a must as all users need it. This is the reason why Facebook keeps the social network profile of users separate from the Workplace.
In the end, the Workplace app gives you a separate window where you can do everything related to your work instead of getting lost in the tabs created in your browser. The Workplace app is designed so that every employee in an organization can maintain his/her contacts and communicate with everyone easily. The idea of enterprise apps being inconvenient and ugly will soon be changed as Facebook has launched this latest Workplace app.