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Facebook Messenger becomes a platform as it opens door to devs

Facebook has announced a new app third-party app platform for its standalone Messenger app.

During his annual F8 address in San Francisco, CEO Mark Zuckerberg explained how developers will be able to integrate their products and services into the chat portal.

The new functionality will, first and foremost allow users to track their purchases through businesses and even access live chats with customer service reps.

Among the 40 apps available at launch will include tools allowing users to integrate GIF files with the Giphy and ESPN apps and add Memes into messages through an app of the same name. Users will be able to change their voice when sending audio messages through FlipLip and include musical clips with the Ditty add on.

Messenger users will also be able to create content in other third-party apps and easily share it back to the app quickly and easily, thanks to the SDK which Facebook is releasing today.

The improved sharing possibilities will also allow users to share to their Newsfeed, or to specific groups if third-party developers deice to integrate the functionality within their apps.

Compatible apps can’t be downloaded from the Messenger app directly, though. Users will be transferred to the Apple App Store in order to obtain the add-ons, which can be installed after the fact.

Perhaps this explains why Facebook forced people into downloading its Messenger app, which now has a whopping 600m users, in the first place?

On its Newsroom blog, the company added: “Today at F8, Messenger introduced a platform for developers to easily create apps that integrate with Messenger. Messenger Platform brings even more ways for the 600 million people who use Messenger every month to express themselves. With more than 40 new apps, people can enhance their conversations with GIFs, photos, videos, audio clips and more.”