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facebookmessenger12Facebook is opening up its messaging platform to anyone.

The social networking giant today announced that users in the U.S., Canada, Peru and Venezuela can now use Facebook Messenger even if they don’t have a Facebook account.

Previously, Facebook required that users log-in with their Facebook credentials in order to use Messenger.

Now, though, you can sign up for Messenger with a name, phone number, and photo.

Facebook created Messenger in 2011 and briefly allowed non-Facebook users to install Messenger in 2012, but since then required people to have an account on the social network.

Facebook, which bought WhatsApp for $16 billion last year, also forced users to download a separate mobile app to send messages on their smartphones in late 2014. This past April, it launched a standalone Messenger app for web browsers.

There are now more than 700 million monthly users using the Messenger app. This past March, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced the Messenger Platform, which will allow developers to build apps for Messenger.

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