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With Messenger, Facebook looks to dethrone SMS texts

The Facebook Messenger app could one day replace traditional SMS text messages, Facebook is claiming. 

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A user powers up his Samsung Galaxy S III smartphone. Facebook has released a refreshed Messenger app for Android phones.

Reuters

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Forget 20-year-old SMS text messages, with their 160 character cap and complete lack of pizazz.

Facebook would prefer you trade up instead to Messenger, the freshly-overhauled, stand-alone mobile app.

Beginning this week, Facebook reps have announced, Android users can sign up for a Messenger account with only their name and phone number, and use the platform to chat with friends and family without going over your monthly text message cap. 

There are, of course, a couple of catches: For one, an iOS version of the updated hasn't yet been unveiled, so iPhone users are out of luck for now. Moreover, the new Messenger will only work in certain markets, including India and Venezuela, although a US version is rumored to be on the way. 

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