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WhatsApp and Facebook take their first public steps towards integration

Patrick Devaney

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It was only recently, that Facebook announced it planned to pull together its three biggest apps. The code behind Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp would be transformed so that it would all resemble one single system. Although Facebook assured everybody that each would retain their independent qualities, the move was a controversial one as it was exactly what Facebook said it wouldn’t do when it acquired Instagram and WhatsApp way back when.

The move makes sense for Facebook as managing one big system is much easier than managing three smaller ones. Just ask Microsoft about why it is so determined to have all Windows users update to Windows 10, if you don’t believe us.

Facebook and WhatsApp link revealed
The links between WhatsApp and Facebook are beginning to show

For the users, the move is controversial as each app collects data from us in different ways, which means they collect different data. Putting the three together offers Facebook a much more complete picture of each of us to sell to advertisers and whoever else is willing to pay.

The flip side is that it might make it easier for us to start communicating across all three networks. Have a friend who is on Instagram but doesn’t have WhatsApp? No problem, soon you might be able to shoot them a message anyway. It looks like we might be about to start seeing these cross-platform features land on Facebook’s three big apps.

WhatsApp will soon allow users to post status updates on Facebook

The latest beta version of WhatsApp for Android, version 2.19.151, has a very interesting new feature. For WhatsApp users who also have Facebook installed on their phones, a new button appears in the WhatsApp Status tab. Just below the My status button there should be the brand new “ADD TO FACEBOOK STORY” button.

WhatsApp share to Facebook
Image via: WABetaInfo

Tapping the new add to Facebook button gives WhatsApp users the chance to post status updates on Facebook. For now, the feature is pretty limited. Users will be able to post status updates including images, videos, GIFs, and text but it’ll all have to be done manually. It isn’t as simple as just sharing your WhatsApp status on Facebook just yet. But then again, who posts WhatsApp status updates anyway? When users tap the “add to Facebook” button, they’ll be redirected to Facebook where they’ll be able to share their story.

In itself, this new feature is not something to get too excited about. It is, however, the very thin end of what is looking like a very large wedge. As time goes by, we can expect to see many more of these inter-compatibility features coming to Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram. As to whether they’ll be worth the privacy sacrifices that go with them, that’ll be up to you.

The “add to Facebook story” button is currently in beta testing, so you shouldn’t expect to see it on your regular version of WhatsApp just yet. If we hear anymore about when to expect it, you’ll be the first to know.

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