Facebook Messages, what it does and how to use it

January 29, 2011

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As we reported earlier in the month Facebook Messages is being rolled out across Ireland and the world.  But many are still wondering what Facebook Messages is and how it works. Our short guide will fill you in on the important bits of this simple but powerful addition to Facebook.

All Together
The new messaging architecture aggregates SMS, emails and updates together into one system, and with this, Facebook hopes, they will be able to create a more complete thread of user conversations across disparate devices and systems.

Facebook messages home

Facebook messages introduction

Familiar interface
With the new system users can send emails, direct messages and text messages through their Facebook accounts using the familiar Facebook direct messaging page.

Facebook messages intro

Facebook messages intro

Ease of use
One of the key features of Facebook Messages is its ease of use – emails no longer require subjects while SMS messages can be sent without the need to remember the person’s number. Users can simply enter their name and an SMS will be sent to their phone.

Facebook Messages interface

Facebook Messages interface

As part of the messaging upgrade Facebook users will now be given email @facebook addresses.  This is the address that Facebook emails will come from and to which emails will be sent.

What does Facebook say?

As with most Facebook upgrades Facebook Messages will raise concerns for user privacy but it remains to be seen if the system will become the all-in-one contact system Facebook hopes for or if it will become another avenue for personal, non-business, communication.

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Piers Dillon Scott

Piers Dillon-Scott is co-editor of The Sociable and writes about stuff he finds. He likes technology, media, and using the Oxford comma (because it just makes sense).

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