Messenger Rooms, Facebook’s Zoom competitor, goes live

Although it never tried to play the role of a social network, Zoom’s video conferencing solution has become one of the most popular ways to communicate with friends and colleagues during the time of the coronavirus pandemic.

However, Zoom has a new competitor: Facebook has now launched its social video chat app Messenger Rooms, which has the capacity to handle up to 50 participants simultaneously without placing a limit on the call length.

By launching it globally, Facebook is looking to get back some of the traffic that platforms such as TikTok and Zoom have been enjoying recently.

It comes as no surprise how integrated Messenger Rooms is with Facebook – as soon as you create a session, users/friends will receive a new alert in their news feed.

Messenger Rooms also makes a great effort to support cross-platform notifications.

In other words, users will be able to hop on a call and initiate calls straight from Instagram’s direct messages.

The same can be said of WhatsApp and Portal, so there is the option to connect with a large number of users online.

The best part of Messenger Rooms is that there is no need for the recipient of the invitation to have a Facebook account, so everyone can take part.

During these troubling times when socialising is out of the question for many, group video chats have become a popular workaround.

Facebook’s CEO Mark Zuckerberg claims that time spent on group video chats has seen a 1,000% increase in recent weeks.

However, there is just one slight drawback to Messenger Rooms: it comes without the much-needed screen-sharing functionality.

Therefore, it is unclear as to whether it will be able to compete with Zoom.

Messenger Rooms is, however, completely free of charge.