In May of 2020 Facebook rolled out Facebook Messenger Rooms as a video chat alternative to services like Zoom, Google Meet, Microsoft Teams, Skype and more. You do need a Facebook account to create a room, but you don’t need an account to join a room. Facebook Messenger rooms can be available for as long as the host wants to keep it active, and you can have up to 50 people in a room at any one time. As security precautions, Facebook lets room creators lock a room at any time, and unwanted participants can easily be removed. In this article I’ll show you how to create a Facebook Messenger room using both the Facebook Messenger app for iPhone, iPad and Android devices, and also the Messenger.com website. Examples of all instructions in the steps can be seen in both the YouTube video above and the image collection located beneath the steps.
Steps to Create a Facebook Messenger Room Using the Facebook App
- Launch the Facebook Messenger app on your iPhone, iPad or Android device. You’ll land on your Facebook Messenger home screen.
- Tap the “People” icon on the screen. The People screen is displayed.
- Tap “Create a Room” at the top of the People screen. The Your Room screen is displayed, showing the video stream from your device’s camera.
- Tap “Who Can Join?” on the screen. A menu is displayed where you can choose to either only allow people into your Facebook Messenger room who have a Facebook account, or anyone who has the link to your room. In this example, I’ll choose “People with the link.”
- Next, tap “Share Link.” A menu with options for sharing the link to your Facebook Messenger room is displayed. Tap to choose the method you want to use for sharing the link to your room. In this example, I’ll choose to email the link. After the person opens the link to your room they’ll land on a screen that will prompt them to join your Facebook Messenger room. If the room is restricted to people with a Facebook account, they’ll need to log in with their Facebook account information to continue to the room. If they don’t have a Facebook account, they’ll need to enter a name to use in the room before they can join. After joining your Facebook Messenger room you’ll see the image from their device’s camera in the center of your screen, and the image from your device’s camera in the corner of your screen. You can tap the screen to see the head’s up display, where you can switch to use a different camera, turn off your camera, mute your audio, see the list of people currently in the room, or take and send a picture. Tapping the smiley face icon in the lower corner of your camera’s window brings up options to change your display. Specifically, you can add effects to your video, change the background, or change the lighting. Tapping the drop-down arrow at the top of the screen will bring up a menu screen. This is where you can lock the room to keep additional users from joining, get the link to the room so you can share it with additional people, remove someone from the room, or end the room.
Steps to Create Facebook Messenger Room Using Messenger.com
- Open a web browser, navigate to Messenger.com, and then log into your Facebook account if prompted. You’ll land on your Facebook Messenger home screen.
- Click the “Create a Room” icon in the upper left corner of the screen. Your Facebook Messenger room opens in a new window. Click “Join As” to join your room with your Facebook Messenger account. You’ll be placed into your Facebook Messenger room, which will display the video feed from your computer’s camera in the corner of the screen. You can invite other people to join your Facebook Messenger room by clicking on the screen to view a head’s up display, and then clicking the “Participants” icon to open a window. Click to copy the link in the Invite People section, and then send the link to anyone you want to invite to your Facebook Messenger room, whether they have a Facebook account or not. After the person you invite opens the link they’ll land on a screen that will prompt them to join your Facebook Messenger room. Participants can either join your room with their Facebook account, or they can join without one by simply entering the name they want to use in the room. If there are any participants you want to remove, you can return to the Participants window, and click “Remove” next to their name. From this window you can also lock your Facebook Messenger room so that no more participants can join, or you can enter the Settings section, where you can end your room.
- You can also use the head’s up display to mute your audio, turn off your camera feed, or share your computer’s display.
- Clicking the “Settings” icon on the head’s up display brings up a Settings menu. This is where you can change which of your computer’s cameras you’re displaying if you have multiple cameras available. You can also change the microphone and switch to a new audio output device.