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Facebook Messenger now requires you to have a Facebook account to join

Surprised it took this long, honestly.

facebook on iphone on a table with a macbook
Image: Unsplash

Facebook quietly rolled out a change to Messenger over the holidays, requiring all new users to have a Facebook account. That means you’ll no longer be able to sign up just with your phone number.

Could this be the start of Facebook’s push to unify all of its messaging platforms?

You’ll now need a Facebook account to use Messenger

While you were probably nursing your post-turkey hangovers, Facebook made a significant change to its Messenger sign up process. Now, you’ll have to sign up for a full Facebook account to talk to those relatives that refuse to use anything but Messenger, as the prior ability to sign up with your phone number is no longer an option.

  • Facebook has removed the ability to sign up for Messenger using a phone number
  • Facebook also recently stopped its practice of using 2FA phone numbers for advertising and friend suggestion purposes

Yay, I guess? Not giving Facebook your phone number is a good thing, although having to create a Facebook account to use Messenger could be the last straw for some users to use rival messaging platforms.

This change also comes during renewed scrutiny from the FTC, which is reportedly considering an injunction to block Facebook unifying Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram into one messaging platform.

What do you think? Surprised it took Facebook this long to require an account to use Messenger? Let us know down below in the comments or carry the discussion over to our Twitter or Facebook.

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