Facebook has said it is planning to merge its three popular messaging platforms – WhatsApp, Facebook Messenger, and Instagram – to create one grand interoperable platform where user of any one service can send and receive messages across the three services in a seamless manner.
This no doubt makes for a grand sort of a rearrangement which the company itself acknowledges will make them get back to the drawing board with each of the three services. In other words, Facebook will have to alter the codes with each of the three messaging apps so that message that originates in one can be successfully received in another app without requiring the user to switch apps.
The above scheme is also a huge endeavour considering each of the app – Instagram, WhatsApp, and Messenger – have been conceptualized and implemented with their own operational philosophies. Messenger came in as just a messaging service while Instagram has a heavy emphasis on media such as images or videos even though both served as a platform for real-time sharing of ideas and thoughts.
WhatsApp too was designed as a simple yet safe means of chatting online with the company later also including the end to end encryption feature to each of the chat messages exchanged on the platform. This made the individual
chats out of reach of even Facebook with none having an inkling of what is being shared across its network.
All of this does make the idea of making the three interoperable quite a challenge not only from the technological side of it but also from the financial point of view as well. That is because Facebook relies on ad revenue and it needs to have individual information of its users to get along with that. With WhatsApp having E2E encryption, it remains to be seen if that is going to be comprised once a merger is affected.
Data sharing could be the other aspect that many might not trust Facebook with given the latter’s dismal privacy records. As such, WhatsApp users might fear a loss of data and other private information to Facebook now that the company is out to tinker with the very codes behind the service.
All of these has made one to wonder if the benefits that the proposed merger plans will bring will get outweighed with the concerns regarding the same. Whether it’s a winning formula that Facebook should better leave untouched.