Well, folks, we're finally getting to see why Facebook decided to make Messenger its own app and why users were forced to download it in order to chat through Facebook.

Facebook is planning on turning Messenger into its own platform, moving beyond simple chatting and introducing peer-to-peer payments this week.

Not only that, but Facebook will also be announcing new ways for developers to make use of the Messenger app. The company hopes that it can make Messenger more useful, putting it in competition with Chinese rival WeChat, which offers things like peer-to-peer payments as well.

Facebook will first be focusing on how third-party developers can build ways to offer content and information to users through Messenger. If this kind of feature turns out to be successful, Facebook is likely to think about how it can bring other new features to the service.

It is currently unclear exactly how Facebook plans to implement its new features and what kinds of features third-party developers will be able to work on. One can only look at services like WeChat to see that further monetizing Messenger is a big step for Facebook.

Facebook will have to be very careful to not repeat mistakes that it has in the past. In past times, Facebook users made use of Facebook games a lot, however that space soon became overcrowded and users started feeling like they were being spammed with notifications for games. One can only be invited to play Candy Crush so many times before it gets annoying. Because of this problem, Facebook is likely to tread very carefully with Messenger in order to not spam users once again.

The changes will represent a big change for Facebook, especially because of the fact that Messenger has so far remained a Facebook-only experience.

Facebook is not the only mobile social media experience to begin opening up the platform to third party developers and advertisers. Snapchat opened up a new feature called "Discover," which is essentially an advertising medium that users can decide to go to. The great thing about this feature is that it offers interesting and unique content and that users have to explicitly want to discover new content, making Discover different from other advertising techniques, in which users often have a say in the matter.

Only time will tell how Facebook actually monetizes Messenger, however, rumors suggest that Facebook will unveil these new features at its F8 conference on March 25.

Image: Kārlis Dambrāns | Flickr

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