Facebook's Messenger Rooms is now available for video chats with anyone

The group video chatting feature launched globally Thursday, and you don't need a Facebook account to join in.

Ry Crist Senior Editor / Reviews - Labs
Originally hailing from Troy, Ohio, Ry Crist is a writer, a text-based adventure connoisseur, a lover of terrible movies and an enthusiastic yet mediocre cook. A CNET editor since 2013, Ry's beats include smart home tech, lighting, appliances, broadband and home networking.
Expertise Smart home technology and wireless connectivity Credentials
  • 10 years product testing experience with the CNET Home team
Ry Crist

After an initial launch last month that was limited to a handful of countries, Facebook's new Messenger Rooms feature for group video chats is available worldwide, the company said Thursday.

With support for up to 50 people in a single room at a given time, Messenger Rooms is a Zoom-like video chatting tool that comes at a time when video chatting couldn't be in higher demand. Video chats made via Rooms have no time limit, and people can join a room from a phone or computer -- regardless of whether they have a Facebook account.

See also: How to use Messenger Rooms, Facebook's free video chat app

The Messenger Rooms privacy page details some of the steps Facebook is taking to keep the feature safe and secure. Room creators can lock their room to prevent people from joining, remove unwanted participants, or block or report users who violate the site's community standards.

"Regardless of whether you use Rooms through your Facebook account or join as a guest, we don't watch or listen to your audio or video calls," Facebook says.

Facebook says anyone in the world can create a room from the Messenger app, while users in North America can also create a room from Facebook.

"We will continue to add more features to Messenger Rooms in the coming months," Facebook says. "We hope Messenger Rooms will enable people everywhere to stay more connected with the people they love, no matter where they might be."

Watch this: 3 video calling alternatives to Zoom