Meta announces end to Facebook-Instagram cross-app chats

Users will soon be unable to have conversations with their Facebook friends on Instagram. According to updated support pages, Meta has decided to put an end to the cross-app communication between the two social media platforms.

This announcement comes years after the initial integration efforts of the cross-platform chatting that was embarked upon in 2020, a venture aimed at harmonizing the messaging experiences across Meta’s vast ecosystem of platforms. At that time, the ability to have cross-app communication chats was conceived to provide users with a seamless messaging conduit, enabling cross-platform communication between Facebook and Instagram accounts. Users were afforded the convenience of messaging or calling their contacts on either platform through the utilization of Messenger or Instagram Direct. However, Meta is now executing a strategic reversal, signaling a palpable shift in its overarching strategic direction.

Commencing in mid-December 2023 (so it is right round the corner), users will confront constraints in instigating new conversations or calls directly with Facebook accounts from within the Instagram interface. This pivotal shift in communication dynamics encourages users to pivot towards Messenger or the Facebook platform for the initiation of new dialogues, thereby redirecting the flow of communication within Meta’s suite of messaging platforms. In the updated support page, Meta noted that users will be unable to start new conversations or calls with Facebook accounts from Instagram.

As another integral facet of this strategic reversal, any existing chats on Instagram involving Facebook accounts will assume a read-only status. This implies that users with Instagram accounts will be divested of the ability to dispatch new messages within these ongoing conversations. Facebook accounts will not be able to view your Activity Status either, and existing chats users have had with Facebook accounts will not move to their inbox on Facebook or Messenger, so they will be lost forever.

This begs the question: Why is the social media company doing this? While Meta has not explicitly elucidated the rationale behind this strategic reversal, industry observers posit a plausible connection to the European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA). This legislative framework mandates interoperability among messaging platforms, and Meta’s decision to terminate cross-app chats aligns with a broader trend of technology companies recalibrating their strategies to align with evolving regulatory landscapes.


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