Facebook has announced that it is now rolling out a new feature on its Messenger (both for Android and iOS) called group calling, which basically allows users to start a group voice over IP (VoIP) call from any group chat. To use this new feature, people just need to tap the Phone icon, and choose which of the members of the group chat they want to include. All the selected participants will then get a Messenger call simultaneously. Naturally, it is possible that not all of the intended recipients will be able to take the call. However, if the call is still in progress by the time they got wind of it, they can still join the group call by tapping the Phone icon in the group chat. Users who participate in the group call can see at any time who is on the call, and even have the ability to ping somebody who has not joined yet. The maximum number of people that can join the group call is 50 members.
It was back in 2013 that Facebook started including VoIP in its wide range of features. By April of 2014, the social media giant was able to complete its roll out of one one one audio calls. Then last year, Facebook founder and chief executive officer Mark Zuckerberg revealed that the company’s Messenger platform already accounted for 10 percent of all mobile VoIP calls made around the world.
With group VoIP calls already in the bag, obviously the next frontier to be conquered by Facebook’s Messenger is group video calling. All things considered, group video calling is expected to be a lot trickier to pull of compared to group VoIP calls. But Facebook is up to the task, and its users may not have to wait too long before they can experience it for themselves.
Some say that Facebook’s overall goal is to conquer the whole Internet. As for the social media giant’s Messenger platform, it might as well be on its way to supplant the phone number. In 2015, it began letting Facebook users chat with other people who are not even their Facebook friends. Using your Facebook account as the primary means of contact over your phone number has its advantages. For one, it is easier to block unwanted callers on Facebook. Moreover, you can block unwanted messages more easily too on Messenger compared to regular text messaging. Lastly, because Facebook makes use of spam detection measures, it is difficult for other people to create clone Facebook accounts in order to bother you.
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