Facebook Wants Messenger to Be the Only App You Use

There's an app for that, and it's always Facebook Messenger.

According to a post on Facebook's blog, the social media giant wants its Messenger app to be much more than just a messaging app, taking the place of smaller apps with more specific purposes.

VP of Messaging Products David Marcus offers a number of predictions for 2016, one being that "threads are the new apps."

Marcus's main example of this is Businesses on Messenger, where users can reach companies for customer service without having to call, email, or download a business's proprietary app. Marcus writes that on Messenger, you can "talk to customer service in truly frictionless and delightful ways...rather than downloading apps that you'll never use again and jumping around from one app to another."

In 2015, Facebook poured its resources into Messenger, gobbling up the territories of other apps like a starving Pac-Man. In November, it mounted its latest attempt to encroach on Snapchat's domain, introducing self-destructing messages. It also enabled users to send and receive money, potentially supplanting the need for apps like Venmo and PayPal. And last month, a partnership with Uber made it possible to request a ride through the app.

All these new features have contributed to significant gains in the number of Messenger users, with the app passing the milestone of 800 million monthly users at the end of 2015. And Facebook predicts more growth in the coming year, as Messenger's reputation as a multipurpose tool spreads.

"The Messenger team's mission is to make Messenger the best place to communicate with all the people and businesses in the world," writes Marcus. Overall, the clear intent is to make Messenger the one app to rule them all.