To call LinkedIn’s messaging services (yesterday) antiquated is to risk gross understatement. However, the professional social network announced today that it is moving forward with the rest of the world and making its messaging services closer to what drives the mobile paradigm.
LinkedIn moving away from the “inbox”
To date, LinkedIn’s messaging app has offered little more than an additional inbox for its users. It was clumsy as well as behind the times. LinkedIn, given the nature of its social network as one designed to connect professionals, has for some time languished with a clumsy interface that more resembles email than a messaging app like Facebook, iMessage, WhatsApp and others. It did nothing to foster casual conversations and shorter messages.
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The company announced today that this second-tier technology is on its way out and the company will begin a roll-out for iOS, Android and the web for its English-speaking customers today while additional languages will soon have access to its new messaging application though details were not forthcoming.
With nearly 400 million users, LinkedIn is a force in the social network game and the company knows it. Whether you are a “premium” subscriber or a free user, it’s believed that all will have access to the new features in the coming months.
“The wait is over,” LinkedIn’s director of product management, Mark Hull, said in a blog post Tuesday. “We know people love to message each other. As you would over text or in-person, it’s now easier for you to have meaningful yet lightweight ways to reach out and light up your professional relationships through conversations.”
Essentially, the company announced that it would copy Facebook’s Messenger as well as others by making it easier to follow continuous threads while directing users to the newest messages received. Additionally, users will be offered push and email notifications for conversations deemed important by its users.
LinkedIn, with today’s announcement, also left the door open to the addition of both voice and video calling as well as the potential to add a messaging assistant. While those features remain a possibility for the future, the company has already begun offering the ability to attach documents and photos to messages as well as GIFs, emoji and stickers.
LinkedIn’s spokesperson went further towards explaining the overhaul today.
“Conversations make your relationships stronger,” Hull said. “Whether you’re researching and reaching out to new business partners or you’re sharing articles and discussing it privately via a message with your colleagues — we believe conversations make everything you do on LinkedIn more meaningful and powerful.”