The Currency

Facebook Messenger Opens the Door to Developers

A bunch of new stuff at the F8 Developer Conference today. Zuckerberg took the stage to announce that Facebook will be opening up the Messenger app platform to businesses and developers. The app will soon allow you to connect with businesses, talk about recent orders, post GIFs, download apps — and of course inevitably buy stuff, too: last week, Facebook announced that you’d soon be able to send money through Messenger. Sounds great, but businesses will have to be careful with tying in too strongly with the ecosystem — they risk losing a lot of customer information and brand identity to Facebook.

Facebook has done a good job porting and monetizing the News Feed core from the computer to our phones. With Messenger, they’ve proven that they can build a mobile-first service that’s both enjoyable and wildly successful. The purchase of WhatsApp increasingly makes sense in the grand scheme of things and most importantly — can now be seen as a bargain at a cool $19 billion. Messaging is huge. And Facebook understands that.

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