Facebook launches free video conferencing

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Social networking giant, Facebook has launched a new group video chat feature “Messenger Room” to ease life of people during their stay at home amid this deadly COVID-19 gripped situation worldwide.

The video conferencing tool, Messenger Room, will enable as many as 50 people to participate in a call, the company said in a statement today.

It will display a layout of participant videos – up to 16 on desktop and 8 on mobile phone.

With so many now staying at home due to the various coronavirus lockdown around the world, there’s a huge demand for video calling features and this is likely why Facebook has opted to launch the new feature now.

Facebook chief executive officer Mark Zuckerberg announced the launching of the service in selected markets on Friday which is already available in Bangladesh.

Messenger Room arrives as some people are looking for an alternative to Zoom, which has faced a number of security and privacy issues.

On top of that, the participants will not need a Facebook or messenger account or download any additional app to join the Room video.

The currently most popular app for video conferencing worldwide, Zoom, on the other hand holds up 100 people in a meeting room but the time limit is only 40 minutes in the free service of the app.

More than 700 million accounts participate in voice and video calls every day on Facebook Messenger and the Facebook-owned WhatsApp, and the number of calls has more than doubled in many areas since the coronavirus outbreak began, according to Facebook.

How to create a Facebook Messenger Room

Once it’s available in your area, here’s how to create a Room from your phone:

1. Open the Messenger app.

2. Tap the people tab at the bottom right of the screen.

3. Tap create a room, and select the people who you want to join.

4. To share a room with people who don’t have a Facebook account, you can share the link with them. You can also share the room in your News Feed, Groups and Events.

Anyone can join a room from phone or computer — no need to download anything, said Facebook.

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