Update: Facebook Messenger is no longer available for Windows. Facebook is only offering it for Android, iOS and Windows Phone currently. We have removed the link to the (now defunct) download page of the Windows Facebook Messenger.
First information about Facebook's plan to release their own instant messaging program appeared on a Facebook support page about a month ago.
Facebook Messenger for Windows, according to that page, offers chat, messaging and notification functionality. The program was initially only available to a group of alpha testers but has since then been made available publicly as well.
Windows users who install the client on their system need to connect the program with a Facebook account before they can use its functionality.
A click on log in opens the Facebook website in the default browser. Here it is then necessary to log in, the client will automatically recognize the log in. Facebook notes that users need to enable the "keep me logged in" feature if they want to use the messenger after closing the browser.
Facebook Messenger looks like a bare bones version of Firefox. Users see three icons at top which indicate friend requests, messages and notifications. Facebook Ticker information and contacts are displayed below.
Chats open in a new window that is using a tabbed interface to separate different chats. The program is bare bones otherwise at the moment. The only other options provided are displayed in the system tray icon's right-click context menu. Here it is possible to dock the Facebook Messenger window to the right of the screen, and to turn off sound notifications.
Facebook Messenger did not work on a 64-bit version of Windows 7. The client worked fine on the other hand on a 32-bit version of Windows. It is not clear if the software is only compatible with 32-bit versions of Windows, or if a setting on the 64-bit test system caused the incompatibility. The player opened fine, but log in was not recognized on the 64-bit system.
Facebook users who use Windows as their operating system can download the messenger from this link.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.