Talking tech since 2003

Though iDevice owners the world over are patiently awaiting the completion of their iOS 7 download, Facebook is launching some overhauled new software of their own today as well.

Facebook for iOS is slowly trickling out to users across the Internet, and comes bundled with a slew of graphical upgrades that complement the iOS 7 aesthetic, a more streamlined navigation interface, and overall improvements to how you peruse your site notifications.

Mechanically, the app serves up the same content you’re familiar with seeing on Facebook – your messages, your requests, your photos, and your site-wide notifications. The focus, visually, though, is on making those individual segments more quickly accessible within the app. This comes courtesy of the new navigation bar at the bottom of the app, which replaces the previously implemented “sliding drawer” functionality used to manage friends, messages, and searches.

The bar is comprised of five sizeable buttons, labeled from left to right as follows: News Feed, Requests, Messages, Notifications, and More. The most notable section is More, the new addition, which houses your access to events, group pages, settings, and of course, more (everything else). And interestingly enough, you won’t lose whatever page you’re on while using the More tab – whatever content you were looking at will be there when you return.


All of these changes and more are available to not only iOS 7 users, but iOS 5 and iOS 6 users as well, though their navigation bar will be black, as opposed to the iOS 7-matching white color. For iPad users, the drawer functionality will remain, as Facebook believes it’s more suited for the larger screen, whereas the new navigation bar is an improvement for a pocket-sized display.

What’s arguably if not more interesting than the changes made to the app itself is the methods by which it was designed. Which is to say, with the help of over 8 million unsuspecting participants. In a nutshell, the company was able to use the app’s new-found native framework (which replaced its HTML5 codebase), to push out updates and features to a subset of users (particularly the new nav-bar). Facebook was able to see how users were using the new features in real time, and could tell if it was a navigational improvement worth pushing to the rest of the audience.

It apparently worked out pretty well.

The new Facebook for iOS app is available now, but might not be available to every individual user just yet, due to general iOS 7 download traffic and giving the app time to propagate across Apple’s servers. But when you do want to get it, either snag it from the App Store here or in the form of an update (if you already own it).

[Source(s): The Verge via TechCrunch]

You've successfully subscribed to BestTechie
Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.
Great! You've successfully signed up.
Your link has expired
Success! Your account is fully activated, you now have access to all content.