Facebook has begun to test a new mobile messaging service called Imagenés, a company it says will help it reach a wider audience.
The announcement comes on the heels of a public announcement last week that it would acquire WhatsApp for $19 billion in cash.
The service is expected to roll out in the next few months.
Facebook said in its press release that Imagenères will have “significant synergies with Whatsapp.”
Its “high-end voice and video communications capabilities will enable Imagenées to serve more people in more places,” Facebook said.
“We’re committed to helping people across the world connect to one another, and Imagenêres is a fantastic example of that,” the company said.
Imagenes will be built on WhatsApp’s core messaging application, but it will also be able to offer its own “cloud messaging services,” Facebook’s statement said.
It said Imagenesis will have a “strong focus on expanding its reach to new audiences.”
Imagenesis is built on Facebook’s messaging application.
Its new messaging service will allow people to send text messages, video calls, photo albums, photos and voice and text messages without using their Facebook account.
The app will be available in Europe and North America, with the first countries to see Imagenesy announced to be the United States and the United Kingdom.
It will be free for people in those countries and will be able sell ad space to third parties for “up to 25% of the value of the messaging content delivered to the consumer,” Facebook wrote in its statement.
Imagenaes will have an exclusive deal with WhatsApp for the next three years, the company wrote.
The deal will allow WhatsApp to expand its services to more users in the United Arab Emirates and Pakistan.