Facebook testing new dedicated macOS client, starting with Workplace enterprise users

Facebook this week has quietly launched a new desktop Mac application with built-in screen sharing and chat. As first discovered by TechCrunch, this app is targeted at Workplace users right now as it focuses on building a suite of services competing with the likes of Slack…

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The app allows Workplace users to access Work Chat directly on their desktop and share files and their desktop screen with another user. It’s a lot like the Workplace Chat website, providing easy access to conversations, search, and more.

For instance, when sharing your screen, you can choose to share either your entire desktop or only a specific application, such as Excel or PowerPoint. This ensures that you won’t accidentally broadcast something private, such as other conversations or sensitive information.

Many avid Messenger users have long called on Facebook to release a dedicated Messenger client for Mac, and this seems to be the first step in that direction. Speaking to TechCrunch, a Facebook spokesperson explained that the desktop app is currently being “tested” by Workplace users, implying that a broader rollout could be on the horizon:

“This was one of the most widely requested features by customers, so we built it. The desktop app is still in beta and being tested by Workplace customers who are providing feedback that we’ll use to improve the product before a wider rollout,” Facebook’s Vanessa Chan explained.

Facebook has largely focused on mobile applications for Messenger thus far and we’ve covered a few third-party solutions for accessing the messaging platform directly from your Mac, but nothing has blown us away.

Whether or not Facebook actually expands its desktop client beyond Workplace users remains to be seen, but doing so would certainly help turn Messenger into a more viable alternative to Apple’s Messages platform.

Would you be interested in a dedicated Messenger app for macOS? Let us know down in the comments.

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Avatar for Chance Miller Chance Miller

Chance is an editor for the entire 9to5 network and covers the latest Apple news for 9to5Mac.

Tips, questions, typos to chance@9to5mac.com