Last week, the news broke that Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg ordered the groundwork to be laid for the unification of Facebook Messenger, Instagram, and WhatsApp. This would allow users of all three platforms to connect with others without having to have a presence on all three. Now, we’re hearing when the company might roll out the change, and it won’t be for a good while.
Zuckerberg stated during an earnings call this week (via The Verge) that Facebook is “really early in thinking through this.” “There’s a lot more we need to figure out,” he said. Because of this, Zuckerberg says the unification probably won’t roll out until 2020 or beyond.
While nothing is set in stone just yet in terms of the what the experience might be when this change is implemented, Zuckerberg did say one proven way this shift will be beneficial is when it comes to security. The company wants end-to-end encryption in its messaging products, and unifying all of them on one platform would make it easier to include. He also says the service could act as a layer for SMS users, sort of like iMessage, that acts as a separate messaging experience that packs more features and is much more secure.
Whatever Facebook decides to do with this change, let’s hope it’s implemented properly. The company has a rough history of including too many features in its apps and making user experiences clunky and unintuitive. Until we hear more about Facebook’s plans, we’ll be crossing our fingers for the best.
We’ll keep you in the loop on this matter as it unfolds.