A bombshell report late last week exposed that Mark Zuckerberg and Co. are taking into consideration a massive change of Facebook’s instant messaging apps which consist of two top-rated chat apps (Messenger and WhatsApp) and the chat version of Instagram. The plan, according to the report, consists of making sure that a user owed of any of the three apps above would be able to get in touch with any other user, without having to sign-up an account on a different social network to do so. The plan might seem to be brilliant if you overlook that Facebook is behind it, and Facebook’s doesn’t take action unless it can generate income from everything down the road. But there may be an unpredicted silver lining in all of this: Facebook’s sort-of unified messaging system might persuade you to finally drop Facebook for good.
Before you freak out about Facebook centralizing Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram under the same roof – specifically if you’re using WhatsApp – you should understand that the three chat apps aren’t going away and that WhatsApp isn’t losing its end-to-end security. That’s a feature not available on Messenger by default, although you can use it in Top secret chats.
But, according to The New York Times report, Zuckerberg ordered that all the apps integrate end-to-end encryption. That should be great news for anyone concerned about Facebook’s spying of messages.
It’s uncertain when the three chat apps will be unified. Say that you’re doing most of your messaging on WhatsApp right now because of end-to-end encryption, as well as the fact that, for the time being, there are no advertisements in it. Once the unified chat system releases, you’ll be able to message anyone on Facebook and Instagram without requiring accounts on those social networks.
In other words, if the only cause that stopped you from leaving Facebook at any point since last year’s Cambridge Analytica scandal, was Messenger, then you’ll finally be able to say goodbye to the social network without being concerned about not being able to get in touch with particular contacts with whom you only chat via Messenger.
That said, the road to a unified chat experience across Facebook properties might not be a easy ride, and there’s one reason to be worried before actually ditching Facebook. For the plan above to work, you’ll likely have to tie together your Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram accounts, something not all people might desire to do. Facebook, however, might wish to access to such a unified identity to provide better ads and make even more money. After all, we previously know that Facebook is monitoring users who don’t have Facebook accounts.