Facebook Home isn’t available for iPhone, but given its mixed reviews since launch that may be a blessing in disguise. However one of Home’s features, chat heads, is now available for iOS’ Facebook app with Version 6.0.
Chat heads is a riff on notifications. Instead of seeing a notification stating you’ve got a message, a circular picture of your friend’s head appears. iOS chat heads only show up when you’re using the Facebook app, unlike in Facebook Home when they show up no matter what you’re doing. The update will also bring Stickers into the main Facebook app, along with an updated interface for iPad users to make it more along the lines of the recent desktop update.
Facebook recently picked up designer and developer Loren Brichter as part of its Facebook Home team. Brichter is best known for introducing Tweetie, an early Twitter client which introduced pull-to-refresh, and the clever, insanely addictive word game Letterpress.
News today, via Instagram’s latest blog post shows that the photo sharing app now has 100 million monthly active users. The achievement marks the culmination of 2 and a half years of development, and a takeover by Facebook. Despite several controversial decisions in the last year, such as the content licensing scandal and its ongoing scuffles with Twitter, Instagram is now stronger than ever.
What makes this achievement even more astonishing is that just one month ago Instagram announced that it had 90 million active monthly users, which means that 10 million new users have joined in the last month, absolutely tremendous growth.
According to data, users upload 40 million new photos every day, and Instagram clocks 8,500 likes and 1000 comments per second.
Taken from the blog, Co-Founder Kevin Systrom writes:
For the first time, we understood why Instagram was going to be different. We understood the power of images to connect people to what was happening in the world around them. And, although Instagram had a fraction of the user base it does today, that night we saw a preview of what Instagram would enable at a much larger scale down the road.
To read the full post, click here. A heartfelt congratulations to Instagram upon reaching such a monumental milestone from all of us here.
If Facebook thought its Poke app would quickly dominate the timed messaging scene and make Snapchat a thing of the past, its plan appears to be off to a rocky start. As Mashable reports, after debuting in the No. 1 slot on the iOS free apps list, Poke has experienced a precipitous drop in popularity, and is now more than 700 spots back after just one month.
Both apps allow users to send messages to their Facebook friends, which automatically delete after a set time. Unfortunately for Facebook, Poke doesn’t really do much to set itself apart from Snapchat, and the app doesn’t appear to have resonated with its intended user base.
Poke is still in version 1.0, so it’s possible that the company has some new and exciting features in the way to revive its already waning popularity. But even if Facebook lets it fade into obscurity, we can chalk it up to a learning experience.
Source: TUAW .
Thread is a contacts app for the iPhone and iPad which follows the current trend in flat, minimalist interface design. If you’re a fan of the latest Twitterific, or Letterpress, then you’re going to love the look of Thread.
Apple’s own Contacts app is probably one of the worst apps on my iDevices. It’s bad enough on the iPhone, but on the iPad it is a joke, with a fake-book design that only uses half the screen.
Thread is the opposite, with super-clean design which shows little more than a list of names, or the contact info for one of those names. The app also syncs with Twitter and Facebook to pull in contacts and details from there, and there’s a built-in dialer for making calls. You can also create groups.
Best of all, it costs just $2. I’d pay a lot more than that if it meant I could ditch the Apple contacts app entirely. As it is, Contacts will have to stay hidden inside the folder marked “Crap,” which is the first folder I create on all my iOS devices.
Source:Cult of Mac.
We all know how the annoying experience of tapping a link to an App Store app on the iPhone. You’re immediately thrown out of whatever app you’re in and forced to view the app’s full page in the App Store. Thankfully, that cumbersome experience no longer exists for app ads in the official Facebook iOS app.
When a developer pays to show an ad for their iOS app in your Facebook feed, you’ll now be able to open and install said app without ever leaving Facebook. This is the first time we’ve seen the ability for users to download an App Store app from a pop-up window.
Unfortunately, this doesn’t mean that any regular App Store link will display this way. Only official app ads that developers pay Facebook for will let you view and download in Facebook itself. TechCrunch explains:
Facebook’s mobile app install ads are bought on a cost per click basis, not a cost per download. That means developers may have been weary to pay for clicks because people wouldn’t always complete the download process. Some users would be surprised and perturbed to be booted from Facebook and pushed into the iOS App Store app when they click “Install App”. They might have immediately backed out and reopened Facebook before initiating the download.
Now there’s a lot less friction in the ad-click-to-install process. In the short term, that should make the ads more valuable to developers and get them to make Facebook a staple of their marketing spend. In the long-term, it could train users to be less afraid of clicking on mobile app install ads.
In the past, I have decided to not actually check out an app in the App Store because I was so peeved about being thrown out of the app I was already in. This new experience in the Facebook app makes App Store discovery much smoother, and I hope more App Store pop-up windows start appearing in other prominent iOS apps.
Apple recently introduced Smart App Banners for advertising App Store apps on the web, but even those ads only let you view an app in the App Store, not download it right away from the banner.
Source: Cult of Mac.