Facebook Messenger for Android hits 1 billion downloads

Facebook's Messenger app for Android this week surpassed 1 billion downloads, thus joining a handful of other apps that reached this impressive threshold.

Last year, the main Facebook app became the first non-Google Android app to pass the 1 billion downloads mark. WhatsApp (also owned by Facebook since last year) is another application that joined this exclusive club. The rest of the apps that were downloaded over 1 billion times from Google Play belong to Google (including Google Search, Maps, Gmail, and YouTube).

Interestingly, the Messenger app is the only among these hugely popular applications that has a Google Play rating of under 4 stars (3.9 stars, to be exact). That's likely because many users are not exactly happy with Facebook's decision to launch Messenger as a separate app, since communicating with friends was perfectly fine via the main Facebook app. Of course, we must not forget that Messenger has extra features, including voice and video calling, or the ability to text non-Facebook friends.

Facebook is constantly trying to improve Messenger. Last week, the app was updated with an enhanced location sharing system. What do you think of Facebook Messenger? Is it essential, or is it just another app for you?

sources: David Marcus (head of Facebook Messenger), Google Play via Tech Crunch

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