Facebook is bringing its platform to mobile. The social network is allowing app developers to connect users more easily to the mobile or web version of their apps when using the site on a mobile device.
To start, Facebook is launching support for the Facebook mobile website and Facebook for iPad, iPod touch and iPhone. In the future, it will extend support to other platforms like Android.
So is Facebook allowing developers an easy way to create mobile-friendly versions of their Facebook apps? Not quite, although that appears to be the longterm goal. Instead, Facebook is going to allow developers that already have a mobile web or iOS version of their app a more seamless way to integrate the experience within Facebook for mobile.
This means that if I send a request to play Words With Friends from Facebook on my desktop, for example, my friend can respond to my request on Facebook for iPhone. The native Words With Friends app will automatically launch on his phone.
Facebook developers that already have iOS apps will get to integrate Facebook's Single Sign-On in their app to tie the two together. Facebook is also offering tools for mobile web app developers. Mobile web apps will be able to take advantage of integrating with the Facebook API and even be able to accept Facebook Credits.
Right now, Facebook is positioning the mobile platform primarily as a way to improve app discovery and increase engagement on mobile devices. It's the engagement aspect that is going to be critical. I have long criticized Facebook for not having a more robust mobile strategy. Monday's announcements are baby steps, for sure, but it shows the company is not ignoring this market.
You can check out some of the games and apps Facebook is launching with on its mobile app showcase.
Are you looking forward to using Facebook apps on your smartphone or tablet? Let us know.
Author: / Posted: 11-10-2011