Just over a week ago, we warned of the pending deadline for the forced transition to Facebook's Messenger app for those who wanted to continue having messaging capabilities. In that post, I wrote, "I personally believe that Facebook shouldn't force this transition, because not everyone (including me) wants to have two separate apps for the same service." As it turns out, a lot of people agree with that statement.
Today was the day that Facebook pulled the plug on the messaging capabilities in its primary app, making it mandatory to download and install the Messenger app in order to continue having private chats. To say that many people were upset at this is an understatement. Very quickly, the app earned itself a 1-star rating at Apple's App Store - the average of thousands of people.
At Google's Play Store, the rating displayed on an app page is the average of every rating it's received since the first release. By contrast, while Apple displays the same average rating, it also shows a separate rating that only reflects the current version. It's for that reason that a 1-star rating is even possible, and that's what gives Messenger a safe haven at Play Store - it has a 4.1-star rating averaged from a staggering 7 million. It only takes a quick glance at the reviews section on that page to see how people feel about the forced transition, however.
The image above is provided by Mashable, which scanned the app's App Store page across a number of different countries. While the overall ratings all hover around 4 stars, the highest attained for the current version is 1.5 star.
Does any of this mean that Facebook is going to backtrack and reinsert messaging capabilities in its primary app? It's hard to say, but given that we've been warned for months that this was coming, it seems unlikely that the company would want to backtrack so quickly. It is clear, though, that many people don't like having two apps installed for a single service. It's great to have a dedicated messenger, but it should remain an option.
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