Facebook has launched an experimental app to send messages to friends via the Apple Watch


Facebook's internal research team today unveiled a new app that lets you stay in touch with your closest friends via the Apple Watch. The app, called Kit, or Keep in Touch, works using a combination of qr codes and Facebook's existing Messenger service.

According to Kit's App Store description, you can start using the App by scanning the qr code on your watch or entering an access code in fb.com/devices. You can then select the Messenger contacts you want to keep in touch with using Kit. The app allows you to send a variety of messages, including voice recordings, emojis, location sharing, doodles and even dictation, with a single tap, similar to the way iMessage is used on the Apple Watch today. However, the messages were sent via Facebook's own Messenger service, not SMS or iMessage.

While Facebook's Messenger already supports the Apple Watch, Kit is more focused on keeping in touch only with close contacts, such as significant others, best friends or family members. This allows it to offer a different user interface and experience from Messenger on the Apple Watch, where you have to navigate on a small screen to read and respond to messages.

Kit, the latest product from the NPE team at Facebook's internal research and development arm, is bundled with Messenger, a move that could help it reach a wider audience as it can tap into Messenger's more than 1 billion users. Moreover, Kit could prove particularly useful in the current outbreak, as people try not to touch smartphones in public and while out in gloves. Instead, they can use Kit to reply to key messages from close friends or family without having to use their phones.