After eight years of keeping Messenger as a standalone app, Facebook may be bringing Messenger’s chat features back to its main app. Discovered by app researcher Jane Manchun Wong, Facebook is currently testing an option in its app that will let users access a new “Chats” section, instead of automatically redirecting to the separate Messenger app.
Facebook decided to make Messenger a standalone app in 2011, and fully deleted chatting capabilities from the main social media app in 2014.
Facebook has already announced it will be integrating its family of messaging services including Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. After the integration is complete, Facebook will apparently be keeping Instagram and WhatsApp's individual apps, which Wong thinks may be the case for Messenger as well.
Wong took to Twitter to announce her discovery, but later added that not all of Messenger’s capabilities are available in the new “Chat” test. Users can only send and receive messages, and have to open the Messenger app to call, send images, or send message reactions.