Facebook is planning to integrate its messaging apps – Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, and Instagram direct messaging.

The three apps will continue to be separate, but this change will allow users to message each other from any of the three apps without having to switch between platforms. This would mean that a Facebook user could communicate directly with someone who only has a WhatsApp account. Currently, This is currently impossible as the applications have no shared infrastructure.

By joining all of its users together across the three platforms, Facebook is able to compete more effectively with Apple iMessage and Google’s messaging services.
It will be interesting to watch how this plays out for Facebook, particularly when it comes to privacy. WhatsApp chats are end-to-end encrypted by default, while Facebook Messenger only offers the feature if you turn on “Secret Conversations.” Instagram messaging does not currently offer any form of end-to-end encryption. The plan for this integration is to make sure there is end-to-end encryption between the three apps, but it is something to keep an eye on as the merger happens.