updated 06:00 pm EDT, Tue May 1, 2012
Native version of existing iPhone app
An iPad-native version of Facebook Messenger is currently in early beta development, according to a report from 9to5Mac. The app, which functions as a broken-out chat service separate from the main Facebook iOS app, features Notification Center support and is currently an upscaled version of the iPhone app, which has been available since last summer. The app offers an iMessage-like data-based chat function for users signed into Facebook.
The Messenger app also offers group chatting and the ability to see friend locations and attach photos, and users can seamlessly switch between the mobile app and Facebook on their computer to continue chatting. The app features push notifications if desired and can run in the background using Notification Center under iOS 5.
The iPhone version, currently at v1.6, is free and the iPad version (when it arrives) is also expected to be free. At present the app is still in a rough state design-wise and has yet to be optimized for the iPad's larger screen (see pictures, below). No release date has been forecast, though the program is in active development. [via 9to5Mac]