Messenger Rooms by Facebook

Facebook have launched a new feature to it’s Messenger platform and it’s arrived at the perfect time. Messenger Rooms is a new group video chat feature and is placed to compete with services like Zoom, Skype, Google Meet and Microsoft Teams that enables up to 50 people to join a video call with NO time limit – even if they don’t have a Facebook account!

With the increased need for video communication in our lives due to the Coronavirus epidemic, new ways for teams, friends and families to connect is definitely welcome and with some platforms requiring additional software to run, Facebook’s decision to offer Messenger Rooms to users with NO Facebook account is refreshing to say the least.

Facebook have also stated that they plan to offer ways to create Rooms from Instagram Direct, WhatsApp and the Portal smart display and include 14 camera filters and changeable backgrounds.

How to create a Messenger Room

Creating a Messenger Room from your mobile device is fairly straight forward:

  1. Ensure sure you have the latest version of the Facebook and Messenger apps
  2. Open the Messenger app.
  3. Tap the People tab at the bottom right of the screen.
  4. Tap Create a Room, and select the people who you want to join.

To share a Messenger Room with people who don’t have a Facebook account, share the link with them.

Top Tip: You can also share the room in your News Feed, Groups and Events!

Rooms Vs The Competition

Although the release of Messenger Rooms and that users don’t need a Facebook account to join a Room it is very welcome, but this doesn’t make Messenger Rooms the all out winner.

Firstly, for some there’s still the idea that Facebook Messenger is a personal tool and have concerns about mixing their Facebook account with business activity. Whilst these users are right to draw lines between work and personal life, there are NO real reasons to be concerned here, imo.

Secondly, platforms like Zoom offer an incredibly fast video platform with an incredibly low delay between users video feeds. You can also integrate computer screen and additional software services to really power a rich, professional video / webinar experience.

How any platform fits your goals ultimately depends on the conversation.

In reality, Messenger Rooms places itself in amongst a variety of group video platforms at a time when we most definitely need it, be it at home or work.

What do you think? Have you used it already at work or at home?