Beluga Is Shutting Down, Facebook Messenger Lives On

Beluga, the messaging company Facebook bought in March this year, will not be available as a separate service anymore. “Now that Facebook Messenger is available everywhere, we’ve decided to stop offering Beluga as a separate service,” said the company in a blog post.

You can keep using Beluga for the time being, but you had better start acrhiving your messages right now, and backing them up. The srevice is being phased out over the next few weeks. Starting November 11, you’ll no longer be able to use Beluga to send messages. On December 15, the Beluga service will shut down completely, and you’ll no longer be able to access your old pods or messages.

Beluga is the brainchild of three ex-Googlers Lucy Zhang, Ben Davenport, and Jon Perlow, the same team that helped Facebook build its standalone messaging system. Now that the Facebook Messaging system is in place, it did not really make sense for two similar services to coexist under the same banner.

“We’d like to thank you all for being such enthusiastic and loyal users. We’ll continue to use your feedback to improve Messenger and make messaging your friends easier, faster and more fun,” concludes the Beluga team.

Just in

Snowflake to acquire TruEra AI observability platform

Snowflake has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire TruEra, providers of an AI observability platform. Financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Biggest Windows 11 update in 2 years nearly finalized, enters Release Preview — Ars Technica

Microsoft has released Windows 11 24H2 build 26100.712 to its Release Preview testing channel for Windows Insiders, a sign that the update is nearly complete and that the company has shifted into bug-fixing mode ahead of general availability, writes Andrew Cunningham in Ars Technica. 

Elon Musk’s xAI is working on making Grok multimodal — The Verge

Elon Musk’s AI company, xAI, is making progress on adding multimodal inputs to its Grok chatbot, according to public developer documents, writes Kylie Robison in The Verge.