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Facebook Messenger for Android now accessible with only a name and phone number

Like it or not, Facebook (FB) has become a mainstream communication channel, much like Twitter has become more than just a place to tell the world what you’re having for lunch in 140 characters or less. In an effort that is sure to bolster Facebook Messenger adoption, Facebook is cutting itself out of the picture — sort of. The social network announced on Tuesday that its Facebook Messenger app for Android no longer requires a Facebook account. All that’s needed to get chatting with buddies who do have a Facebook account is a name and a phone number. Make no mistake, the messages are still being sent through Facebook’s backend; you just won’t need to log on with an account if you’re irked by its growing privacy concerns. There’s no mention of the iOS Messenger app getting the same treatment, but Facebook’s decision to make its Messenger app more universal feels like reaffirmation that it’s still committed “to make the world more open and connected.”

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