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Facebook Messenger hits 1-B users

SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) – Facebook said Wednesday the number of users of its Messenger application had topped one billion, a key milestone as it seeks to expand the platform to new services.

The growth in Messenger gives greater reach to Facebook, which is moving to create a “family” of applications beyond the social network. “As part of this journey to one billion, we focused on creating the best possible experiences in modern day communications,” said Facebook vice president David Marcus in a statement. “We remain focused on helping connect people to the people and businesses who matter most.”

Facebook itself has more than 1.6 billion users, and WhatsApp, another messaging application acquired by Facebook for some $20 billion in 2014, also counts more than a billion users. Other services in the Facebook “family” include Instagram, which more than 500 million use to share images, and Oculus, which makes virtual reality gear.

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