Facebook Messenger RoomSource: Facebook

What you need to know

  • Messenger Rooms is now being rolled out globally.
  • The feature, which is Facebook's answer to Zoom, lets you host group video calls with up to 50 people and no time limit.
  • You can invite people to group video calls from Messenger or Facebook, even if they do not have a Facebook account.

Facebook announced Messenger Rooms last month, allowing users to host free video calls right from Messenger or Facebook and invite up to 50 people with no time limit. The social networking giant has now announced that it is rolling out the feature globally.

If you live in North America, you should now be able to create a room from Facebook through News Feed, Groups and Events. Facebook users in other regions will be able to create rooms from the Messenger mobile and desktop apps by heading over to the "People" section.

Facebook says it has developed the feature with privacy in mind and won't be viewing or listening to your calls. Unsurprisingly, however, the feature doesn't utilize end-to-end encryption. The person who creates a room will be able to decide who can join the group video call and whether the room needs to be locked or unlocked to new guests. Additionally, the host will have to be present for the call to begin and will be able to remove users from a call at any time.

Check out all of the best VPN services you can use in 2020

Facebook's Zoom rival also offers new AI-powered 360-degree backgrounds and 14 different camera filters to brighten your face, as well as your surroundings. More features are going be added to Messenger Rooms in the coming months, including the ability to create rooms from WhatsApp, Portal, and Instagram Direct.

Zoom isn't great for sensitive content but using it to just talk while stuck at home is fine