Social Media

7 Best Facebook Messenger Apps for Desktop and Mobile

Mihir Patkar 04-05-2016

As the world’s biggest social network, Facebook has a lot of your friends and they want to talk to you. That’s what Facebook Messenger is for! It’s available on the web as well as on Android and iOS. But there’s no official desktop app.


Now, there are some awesome Facebook Messenger tips and tricks 15 Hidden Facebook Messenger Tricks You Need to Try Even though you use Facebook Messenger every day, here are some Facebook Messenger secrets you may have missed. Read More that make the service better than ever. But you still can’t do a few things. For instance, you can’t use multiple Facebook accounts on the official Messenger app. And maybe you want better notifications on desktops, and even browser extensions.

Don’t worry, third party developers have your back. Here are the best Facebook Messenger apps you can get, apart from the official one.

Messenger for Desktop

Simple Messenger on Desktop, No Frills

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux

Price: Free


As mentioned earlier, the easiest way to access Facebook Messenger on a desktop computer is to use the official web app. But that means having a browser window open, and relying on that browser’s notifications. For a standalone app, get Messenger for Desktop, a free tool for all major desktop operating systems (OS).


First of all, Messenger for Desktop lets you do everything the web version will, like making calls to friends, sending chat stickers What Are Facebook Stickers? Everything You Need to Know Learn more in this overview of what Facebook stickers are and how you can use them to express yourself on Facebook. Read More , and so on. In addition to that, there are a few more features:

  • Themes: Apart from the default theme, you can get dark and mosaic themes.
  • Notifications: It’s built for your OS and uses native notifications for alerts.
  • Startup: Set up Messenger to launch on startup.
  • Menu bar: Mac users can make the app run in the Menu bar.

Download: Messenger for Desktop for Windows, for Mac, for 32-bit Linux, and for 64-bit Linux



Multiple Facebook Account Support & Other IM or Chat Apps Too

Platforms: Windows, Mac, Linux

Price: Free

Franz is a fantastic new cross-platform tool that is a universal, all-in-one chat app for several instant messaging services. If you ask me, this is the best way to run Facebook Messenger on Linux How To Use Facebook Messenger on Linux Facebook chat on Linux took a hit when Facebook shut down XMPP in April 2015, leaving Pidgin users with Facebook integration unable to chat. Here's how to change that, with a new Pidgin plugin. Read More . The best part? You can run multiple Facebook Messenger accounts!



Download the program, connect Facebook, and put in your credentials. Once you are logged in, it’s just Facebook Messenger as usual. And like Messenger for Desktop, it supports native notifications.

To set up another Facebook Messenger account, click the Franz icon and choose Messenger under “Add New Service”. Remember to name it something else, so you can distinguish the two accounts. And yeah, you can add as many accounts as you want.

Download: Franz for 32-bit Windows, for 64-bit Windows, for Mac OS X, for 32-bit Linux, and for 64-bit Linux


Current for Mac

Separate Chat Windows for Contacts and Menu Bar Integration

Platforms: Mac

Price: $2.99

Mac users have some great apps that aren’t on other platforms, and Current is a fantastic example of that. Current is more than just about the Messenger, it’s the best Facebook app for Macs Chat Outside The Browser With Current, A Facebook App For Mac Sick of opening Facebook in your browser, just to use chat? Current for Facebook is a Mac app that brings your favourite social network to the OS X desktop. Read More . But there are two special features for Messenger.


First, Current works from the Mac Menu bar, so you can click the little icon at any time and get a tiny window to browse your Messages. Second, and this is the cool part, Current lets you separate each contact’s chat into a separate floating window! Opening these separate chat windows ensures you never miss messages and can carry on multiple conversations while doing other things.

Download: Current for Facebook for Mac ($2.99) [No Longer Available]

Facebook Messenger for Firefox

Always-On Chat in Your Sidebar

Platform: Mozilla Firefox (Windows, Mac, Linux)

Price: Free

Mozilla’s Firefox has amazing Facebook extensions 5.5 Great Firefox Extensions to Make Facebook Awesome [Weekly Facebook Tips] Facebook users are continually finding themselves frustrated by settings that cannot be changed within Facebook, or simply finding that Facebook is too integrated (or not integrated enough) into the rest of their lives. The good... Read More , but if all you want is chat, there’s a special gem. You see, Firefox’s sidebar is customizable and extensions like All-In-One Sidebar The Real End Of Clutter: All-In-One Sidebar Brings Everything You Need To Your Sidebar [Firefox] I'm not easily impressed with add-ons, but All-in-One Sidebar is an excellent addition to anyone's Firefox browser. Yes, you shouldn't install too many browser extensions, but AiOS can easily replace several you're already using, and... Read More enable you to get more out of it. So how about just keeping Facebook Messenger on all the time, no matter how you browse?


The Firefox Messenger add-on needs you to sign in with your FB account and then it works just like a mobile version of the Messenger app. You don’t miss out on any features, including voice calls, but you’ll need to grant Firefox permission for that. It’s super simple and a handy extension when you want to browse the web while continuing to chat without changing tabs all the time.

Download: Facebook Messenger for Firefox (Free)

Facebook Messenger Panel [No Longer Available]

Floating Panel for Messenger Anywhere

Platform: Google Chrome (Windows, Mac, Linux)

Price: Free

If you prefer Chrome to Firefox, you can’t get a sidebar, but you can get an always-on Messenger window. It’s through Chrome’s built-in Panels feature, which you will need to enable before using it. Basically, a tiny window pops up which can be used even outside of Chrome.


Again, just log into Facebook and you’ll be ready to start chatting. No matter which tab you browse to, the Facebook Messenger Panel stays on top, or minimized right where the status bar would be.

Download: Facebook Messenger Panel for Chrome [No Longer Available]

Friendly Social

Use Multiple Accounts on iPhone or iPad

Platform: iOS

Price: Free

Facebook Messenger for iOS is pretty awesome, especially with features like Chat Heads Chat Heads & Stickers - Check Out The New Features on Facebook Messenger [Weekly Facebook Tips] Have you already noticed the latest features of Facebook chat on iOS and Facebook Messenger on Android? Prior to the release of Facebook Home, Facebook's chat app received an update which included Chat Heads and... Read More . But it restricts you to a single Facebook account. If you handle multiple Facebook accounts and need to chat with people on both, get a free app called Friendly Social.

It’s actually a full Facebook app, not just for Messenger, but the Messenger part works perfectly. You can set up as many Facebook accounts as you want, and switching between them is a breeze. On the down side, two accounts can’t be used simultaneously, so you will need to log out of one and log into another every time.

So while you’ll get only one account’s notifications at a time, you can still set up IFTTT on iPhone to get notifications Put Your iPhone To Work With IFTTT IFTTT is an acronym for "If This, Then That" and it's pronounced like the latter part of the word "gift". The service promises to put the web to work for you, using a system of... Read More from your other accounts.

Download: Friendly Social for iOS (Free)

Lite Messenger

Privacy-Friendly and Permission-Friendly Chat

Platform: Android

Price: Free

Facebook Messenger is notorious for seeking intrusive permissions How Bad Are Those Facebook Messenger Permissions Anyway? You've probably been hearing a lot about Facebook's Messenger app. Let's quell the rumors and find out if the permissions are as bad as they claim. Read More . Especially on Android, the app asks for permission to so many different aspects of the phone, you won’t even be sure what it needs that access for or when you will use it. Lite Messenger is an app that focuses on giving you control instead of Facebook.


Lite Messenger requires no access to your personal data, supports notifications, looks pretty good, and adds in a few other features. For example, you can switch on a setting that stops your friends from knowing if you’ve seen their message. You’ll get access to other Facebook features too, so go ahead and browse your News Feed while you’re at it.

Download: Lite Messenger for Facebook for Android (Free)

Is Messenger Your Main Chat App?

While Facebook is huge, there are several other fast-growing social networks Here Are the Fastest Growing Social Networks You Need to Join While Facebook holds the lion's share of the social market, new services like Kik, Snapchat and WhatsApp threaten to break Facebook's stranglehold on the social Internet. Read More , many of which are instant messaging apps. For example, WhatsApp is huge, and Viber and Line keep adding more users every day.

With that context, is Facebook your main chat app today? Why or why not?

Related topics: Facebook, Online Chat.

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  1. Bess
    October 17, 2017 at 3:38 am

    What about a Messenger desktop app for those who don't have Facebook but use Facebook's Messenger phone app? It seems that all the desktop apps posted here still require a person to log in with a Facebook email add + pwd.

  2. RAFIK
    January 3, 2017 at 7:05 pm

    theres also Caprine an open source facebook messanger app for windows os x and linux, it have a night mode too ;)

  3. Anonymous
    August 16, 2016 at 8:03 am

    Actually I use Miranda to chat on Facebook, Steam and VK. Pretty useful. Noone cares about Facebook anymore.

  4. Anonymous
    May 6, 2016 at 8:00 am

    Is Messenger for Desktop safe and open-source?

  5. Swanny
    May 5, 2016 at 2:38 am

    Facebook also recently released an official Windows 10 app for Messenger:

    • CK
      May 13, 2016 at 7:17 pm

      Seriously, how does a post like this not mention an actual official Messenger app for Windows???

  6. Debby Hanoka
    May 4, 2016 at 8:48 pm

    You have overlooked Trillian IM from Cerulian Studios. It permits instant messaging through Facebook. I use it regularly on my Windows 10-based system, and I will vouch for it being a stable app.

    As always, do your own research and make your own decision. Thank you.