Meta is breaking up the love between Instagram and Facebook Messenger chats

Facebook Messenger app's splash screen on a mobile device
(Image credit: Jay Bonggolto / Android Central)

What you need to know

  • Meta is pulling the plug on the cross-platform integration between Facebook Messenger and Instagram.
  • This means that cross-app chatting between the two platforms will no longer be possible.
  • The integration is being removed in mid-December.

It looks like Meta will soon be getting rid of a feature that lets you chat with your Facebook friends on Instagram. 

The company announced via a new Instagram support page that it plans to abolish the cross-platform integration that allows the functionality. This means that starting mid-December, cross-app chatting between Facebook and Instagram will be a distant memory. 

Once Meta pulls the plug on the integration, you’ll no longer be able to start new calls or chats with Facebook friends from Instagram. If you have any existing conversations with Facebook accounts on Instagram, they will be read-only. The feature’s removal also means that Facebook accounts will no longer be able to see your activity status or read receipts. Finally, any existing chats won’t move to your inbox on either platform. 

The tech giant first announced the cross-platform integration between Instagram and Facebook in 2019, and the functionality went live a year later through Meta’s so-called account center. Housed on Instagram, this is where you can manage user profiles on the two social media platforms. As your accounts are connected, it’s been possible to send Facebook messages without ever having to leave Instagram.

But now, this capability will only be possible for another few weeks until the company officially discontinues the cross-platform functionality.

Meta hasn’t provided any clear reason as to why it’s now changing course three years later. However, it’s likely the reversal could be to avoid regulatory consequences of the EU’s Digital Markets Act, which aims to keep companies from holding monopoly power by favoring their own services. It also includes requirements for large companies to include compatibility between messaging platforms.

It’s speculated that Meta might be dismantling this specific cross-app chatting feature in the meantime so that the company can pave the way towards wider interoperability between its platforms that is compliant with EU regulations.