Score one for Android over iOS on the Facebook messaging app front. The popular social network has updated their Facebook Messenger for Android app to support threaded SMS and Facebook messages on select phones.
Essentially, any text you receive will get delivered to Messenger for Android, on top of your primary SMS client. No local texts will ever get sent to Facebook or to Messenger apps on other platforms. This means that all your SMS and Facebook messages are kept in one app.
Why is this only available on Android? Quite simply, the iOS API won’t allow access to users SMS messages. Plus, Apple want everyone to use their iMessage service instead.
The new look
Facebook Messenger for Android has always looked pretty stream-lined and sleek. The simple but impressive design continues in this latest update of the program. The main screen will pull up your messages, from most recent to oldest.
If you want to see which of your friends are online at this very moment, either tap the button in the upper right corner of your screen or swipe your finger across the screen from right to left. Tapping a friend’s name will bring you directly into a message screen.
Messaging is simple and the interface is easily readable in its new threaded format.
The only minor hangup I encountered on my own was simply that I was initially prompted as to whether or not I wanted to share my location (I didn’t). No matter how many times I clicked to get the location feature to turn off, it didn’t work from that initial message prompt.
Once I closed out of the prompt though, turning off the location feature was as simple as re-clicking the same icon directly to the left of the Send button.
Note that this doesn’t turn off location sharing for all of your friends though. To do that, you’ll need to return to the main screen, click the far right icon at the bottom of your screen, and then choose Settings.
Opt for Location Services next and uncheck the ‘Location is on‘ option.
Facebook Messenger for Android’s new SMS threading feature is a big improvement in terms of the app’s visual experience. If you don’t have it yet on your phone, keep an eye out. It’s a feature you won’t want to miss once it’s made available.