Facebook to launch new Workplace chat features

One year after its launch, Workplace gets a desktop chat app and group video chat; Facebook says more than 30,000 organizations now use the platform.

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(Image: Facebook)

Facebook on Thursday is launching a desktop chat application for Workplace, its one-year-old enterprise collaboration platform. Additionally, in the coming weeks, Workplace Chat will support group video chats on desktop and mobile.

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"Increasingly, we've found that many customers rely on messaging for real-time, reliable communication," wrote Julien Codorniou, VP of Workplace, in a blog post.

Workplace Chat has always had mobile and browser components, and the new desktop app offers the same features of the mobile app, including video chat, screen sharing, file sharing, @mentions, and GIFs. The new desktop version is available for Workplace Chat on PC, Mac, Android, or iOS.

On its one-year anniversary, Workplace is also getting a design update.

The workplace collaboration space remains crowded, and Facebook's competitors have been busy rolling out their own new features. Slack recently added a new interactive screen sharing feature that rounds out its portfolio of call services. Meanwhile, Microsoft outlined its plans to add more messaging, meetings, and calling features to Microsoft Teams next year as it migrates Skype for Business users to Teams.

While there are several vendors pitching new collaboration tools and platforms, Workplace has managed to nab some major customers such as Walmart, Heineken, Spotify, and Lyft. One year after the platform's launch, there are now more than 30,000 organizations using Workplace worldwide, Facebook says -- more than double from just six months ago.

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