As expected, Facebook (NASDAQ:FB) has added a free calling feature to its Messenger app for Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) iOS devices. It’s available only to users in the U.S. and Canada — so far. The calls can be made over WiFi or data connections.
However, the Messenger service could be a serious threat to VoIP operators, such as Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Skype and Vonage (NASDAQ:VG). Facebook is likely to get substantial uptake from its massive user base, who certainly like to chat with friends!
And yes, Messenger is a highly popular app, ranked No. 17 on Apple’s App Store. With free calling, it’s a good bet that downloads will get a boost.
Tom Taulli runs the InvestorPlace blog IPO Playbook, a site dedicated to the hottest news and rumors about initial public offerings. He is also the author of “How to Create the Next Facebook” and “High-Profit IPO Strategies: Finding Breakout IPOs for Investors and Traders.” Follow him on Twitter at @ttaulli. As of this writing, he did not hold a position in any of the aforementioned securities.