Facebook Launch ‘Paper’, Their Newest Reader App

On the 30th of January, Facebook announced that a new standalone news reader mobile app, known as ‘Paper’, would be released in the near future. Whilst it has apparently been in the works for years, the announcement came only 24 hours after Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s famous CEO, revealed that they would be releasing more standalone apps this year.

What is it?
Paper will display content from 19 different ‘sections’ (such as sports, tech, pop culture and LOL), which users can choose to subscribe to. Each of these sections features a rotating carousel of images along the top with individual cards and stories below; a user can click on cards or stories that they wish to investigate further. For now, these sections cannot be personalised.

Users will also be given the opportunity to share their own stories on Paper, with anything posted also appearing on their Facebook Newsfeed. The app enables a user to preview what their posts will look like before sharing, ensuring that they are fully satisfied with the appearance. Users will also be able to share, ‘like’ and comment on stories, the same as with traditional Facebook.

Paper’s creation
It has been revealed that Paper was created by a 15-person team employed by Facebook Creative Labs. This is a broader initiative of the social network whose sole job it is to work on these standalone apps. It has also been announced that Paper sans advertisements, even though Facebook itself has seen quite a lot of success through mobile ads (53% of their revenue last quarter).

According to reports, Paper will be officially launched on the US App Store on Monday the 3rd of February. It will only be available to iPhone users in the beginning and there are not, as of yet, any indications of when an Android or iPad version of the app will become available. Whilst many have argued that Paper could spell the death of Facebook’s traditional app, only time will tell.

Facebook Now Allow Public Posts To Be Embedded

On August 1, Facebook began allowing ‘public’ posts to be embedded on third-party websites. This is a strategy that Twitter originally created in 2010 and one that Instagram recently copied, too. It is believed that this new embedded post function is a result of Facebook trying to embrace the idea of public content, even though its origins lie in private sharing.

Facebook embedded post

Whilst the embedded function has not been implemented across the whole of Facebook as of yet, you are able to see a preview of it on
5 websites – Bleacher Report, CNN, Huffington Post, Mashable and People. Soon, however, it is expected that we will all be able to see the ‘embed’ option in drop-down arrows on newsfeed and timeline posts.

embed this post

And Facebook have revealed that their embedded function will include all the bells and whistles – you will be able to embed posts with text, pictures and video, not to mention like and comment, follow public figures, like pages, and clickable hashtags (which will take you back to Facebook). You will, however, be restricted to public posts only.

Buy why has Facebook decided that their new embedded function is a good idea and the best way forward? Well, one of their basic goals is to increase their footprint on the web and create more in-roads to their website. Basically, they are looking for new and improved ways to draw traffic to the Facebook site, and allowing users to embed posts will help this.

“Let newsmakers embed your content and they’ll look to you for material, likely publish more to you, and you’ll have more content to advertise against,” says Josh Constantine of Tech Crunch. The fact is there’s huge traffic and influence to be had by becoming a source of breaking news and eyewitness accounts. And Facebook is trying to buy into this.

Image Source: Facebook