Facebook Messenger drops support for older versions of Windows and Windows Phones

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Another day, another app leaves the older versions of Windows and Windows Phones behind. This time, it’s Facebook Messenger. The popular instant messaging app will depart smartphones running Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 and earlier operating systems, which account for 76% of the Windows ecosystem.

Facebook Messenger is the latest app to depart Windows Phones as the platform continues to struggle in a market dominated by Apple and Android devices. Users of the app received an advisory email informing them the app would stop supporting their devices at the end of March, meaning they will no longer be able to send and receive messages.

The Messenger team said in a blog post:

With over 1B people using Messenger every month, our team spends countless hours making it the best way to message your friends and family. One of the ways we continue to improve is by consistently introducing rich features, like voice and video calling, games, and bots for Messenger. Using older versions of apps means that experiences won’t work well or sometimes not at all. As a result, we are asking people who are using older versions to upgrade so they can enjoy more of the delightful features of Messenger.

We will be ending support for messaging in some older mobile app versions of Messenger and Facebook. We have proactively reached out to those affected and have also offered suggestions right in Messenger. These include updating your app to the latest version, loading an OS update for your device or migrating to Facebook Lite. If your devices do not support the newest versions of Facebook, we recommend going to Facebook.com through your mobile browser.

The Microsoft Lumia 640, 640 XL and the Lumia 535 are among the devices affected by the app’s leave. The withdrawal comes a month after Skype pulled the plug on its app for older versions of Windows. Microsoft’s latest move also applies to Facebook for Windows Phone, Messenger for Windows Phone 8 and 8.1, and Facebook for Windows 8 and 8.1 desktop app.