Facebook has removed its Instant Articles platform from Messenger. The feature allows publishers to have their content load ten times faster for readers than it would on the regular mobile site.
The goal was to reduce the number of people who would exit an article without reading because it took too long to load. In fact, Facebook has said at least 40 percent of website visitors will abandon attempting to read an article if the website it’s hosted on takes more than three seconds to load.
While Instant Articles will no longer be available through Messenger, the feature will continue to be supported on the company’s social network.
“As we continue to refine and improve Instant Articles — and in order to have the greatest impact on people and publishers — we’re focusing our investment in Instant Articles in the Facebook core app and are no longer offering Instant Articles in Messenger,” a Facebook spokesperson told TechCrunch. “We believe that Messenger is an exciting channel for new and interesting news consumption experiences, including the opportunity to build unique messaging experiences in Messenger that many publishers have executed successfully via the Messenger Platform.”
However, in the time since, a number of publishers — including The New York Times and Bloomberg — have withdrawn their registration to Instant Articles, citing a lack of monetization on the platform. To help with this, Facebook confirmed in July that it will launch a dedicated news subscription service to help publishers make more money from their articles.