After a short two-week wait, Facebook launches the expected Messenger Rooms video client. The free chat platform, which can accommodate up to 50 people, is available to everyone on the Facebook website, the Facebook (or Messenger) mobile app or the WhatsApp beta app. Surprisingly, you can also invite people without a Facebook account to participate in video chats.
Messenger Rooms are already well integrated with the Facebook ecosystem. Most people start video chats through the Messenger client, but you can also share or schedule large chats through your news feed, groups, or an events page. And since Messenger Rooms comes with a clutter of security features, it's easy to limit the number of people per room, exclude strangers, or exclude people you don't like.
Facebook is trying to compete with services like Zoom and Google Duo, which are increasing in popularity due to social distance. It's a smart move: Messenger Rooms is baked into Facebook, and it should appeal to ordinary people who don't want to sign up for a new service or download a confusing new chat client. Moreover, Rooms already feels well polished, and it even has some nice AR and virtual background tools.
Soon Messenger Rooms will work seamlessly on Facebook, WhatsApp, Instagram and Portal (the smart Facebook home device). Facebook is already testing its video chat tool in the latest beta of WhatsApp, but the company has not announced an official launch date for Rooms on WhastApp.
Source: Facebook and via 9to5Google