After a trial of few months, Facebook has finally integrated SMS into the Messenger app of Android. This means that the users can send and receive SMS to anyone via their Messenger App.
This was earlier tried during 2013, but Facebook withdrew the feature after finding that not many users are using the service. Besides the text messages, people can send stickers, voice clips, emojis etc. To enable the feature in their Messengers, people need to manually set it. Visit Settings, opt SMS from the list of options, and switch on the Default SMS option.
Facebook's shows SMS conversations in purple, while Messenger chats remain blue. Facebook has also clarified that none of the messages are stored on the company's servers and they will be sent through the carrier from its SMS/ MMS channels. That does mean that regular texting fees do apply. Due to a certain limitations on iOS, the feature hasn’t reached Apple users yet. Apple’s Messaging is getting enhancements with emojis, icons, etc., so iPhone users may not be missing too much.
Commenting on the new roll out, Vice President of Messaging Products at Facebook, David Marcus said, “"A lot of Android texting apps didn't keep up with the evolution of messaging, so we felt like we truly had to make Messenger the best SMS client for Android. As a result, in addition to having a fully integrated app for all your messaging, you're now able to send voice clips, stickers, and even share your location over SMS on top of standard texting features. You will now also enjoy all the things you've come to love about Messenger for all your messages, including chat heads and more,"