PHILADELPHIA (CBS) —  Are phone numbers themselves heading the way of pagers, fax machines and landlines that used to rely on them? One Facebook executive thinks so.

In a blog post, David Marcus, the head of Facebook’s chat service Messenger predicts 2016 will mark the end of phone numbers.

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Jonah Berger, Wharton professor and author of “Contagious: Why Things Catch On” agrees.

“For most of us, I think it’s really hard to actually remember what someone’s phone number actually is,” Berger said. “We use our phones so often or we click on a button that has it. But if there was a test where you had to say, do you remember your best friends number or could you type in your best friend’s number I think most of us would fail.”

Just like the flip phone is disappearing, old communication styles could be disappearing too. Now we can do so much more with our phones. We went from just making phone calls and sending basic text-only messages to having computers in our pockets.

“Are we less likely to use the phone than ever before? Certainly and usage of phones and phone calls particularly young people is definitely decreasing,” Berger concluded.

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With 800 million users, Facebook wants its Messenger app to be the go-to chat platform. Users can talk, send text messages, photos, videos, and even money to one another- and they don’t need to know a person’s phone number to do it on Messenger.



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