On mobile, Facebook has required the installation of a separate app in order to read and send messages to your friends. However, there are a couple of easy ways to avoid having to use the extra app if you don’t want to. You could use your PC or laptop instead of trying to use your mobile phone. The desktop site still allows access to Facebook messages. If you still want to use your mobile device, follow these steps to use Facebook messenger without the app:
Time needed: 2 minutes.
Here are the steps to use FB Messenger without the app.
- First, you should ensure that you no longer have the messenger app installed on your device.
If you have it, deactivate Facebook Messenger.
- Next, open any web browser using your mobile device and navigate to the Facebook website.
- Before logging into Facebook on the site, go into your browser’s settings. On Chrome, you click the three dots in the top right when the settings menu is open, click the option to view the desktop site.
- After the desktop version of Facebook loads, you can log in and then read or write any messages you like without using the app.
Differences Between the Mobile and Desktop Versions
For a number of years, the mobile version has blocked access to Facebook’s direct messaging system to force users to download a separate app. The function of contracting friends by writing them direct messages or creating groups is very practical and used by many users. The requirement to download a second app to have access to this feature is just an inconvenience. The mobile app version of Facebook still has the mailbox symbol and will alert you when a new message has arrived, but there is a prompt to download the messenger app in order to view it and then reply. However, the desktop version of Facebook can still access the messenger functions through the mailbox symbol. It is much harder to navigate the desktop version of Facebook when using a mobile device. Because the desktop version lacks optimization for mobile viewing, it requires much more effort to navigate.
How to Access the Desktop Site on Apple and Android
Most android users have Chrome installed on their mobile. To access the desktop versions of websites, all you need to do is access the settings with the three dots in the top right. Scroll down in the menu, and there will be a tick box to show the desktop version of the site. With Apple, however, the process is slightly different. When you navigate to a website that you want to view as a desktop version, locate the AA button to the left of the URL bar in Safari. After clicking this button, a small menu will pop up. Click on the request desktop site, and the page should then load as if you were viewing it from a PC.
Why not Just Install the Messenger App?
The main reasons people are against using the messenger app are the permissions that it asks for the first time that you run it. The Messenger app wants access to use the following on your smartphone;
- The contacts list.
- And even the call function of your phone.
For many people, there are a lot of permissions to give a messaging application. Another problem is that if you don’t send encrypted messages, Facebook’s employees can even read your messages. This leads to the rise in the popularity of using a detour to prevent giving away access to all of your data.
Using FB Messenger without the App in Short
In conclusion, it is possible to avoid using the Facebook messenger app in order to access the messenger functions of Facebook. However, it is not a user-friendly experience because Facebook is actively trying to stop you from doing this and instead download their other application. For many people, it feels too invasive to give Facebook so much access to personal data on top of the data already provided by having a profile. The Facebook messenger desktop app has similar privacy issues for its users as well. For many, Facebook is a way to remain in contact with friends and family, meaning that they download the messenger app without thought to keep access to their messages.
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If you liked this article about Facebook Messenger, you may also want to check out our article about Facebook Messenger vs WhatsApp.