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Facebook 2.0 Announced for Android – It’s Native, Faster, and Completely Rebuilt

This morning, Facebook has announced that version 2.0 of their Android app is ready for prime time. Built with native code to improve speed and performance, this has been a long time in the making. Load time of the app should now happen much quicker, photos open instantly, your timeline is faster than ever, and the app is more efficient with a smoother UI thanks to a reduction in garbage collection (more at the engineering link below). 

Highlights

  • Launch the app quickly:  When you’re on your phone, nothing matters more than getting what you want quickly. We’re always working to make our apps faster, and in this update we’ve rebuilt news feed, notifications and Timeline for speed.
  • View photos instantly:  Tap on any photo to open it right away, and scroll through photo albums without leaving news feed
  • Open Timeline faster:  Go to your Timeline and view updates and photos more quickly than ever.

The app will go live today in the Google Play store.

Update:  Version 2.0 is now live in the Play store.

So, tell us your thoughts?

Via:  Facebook [Engineering Notes]

  • jzwerlz43

    unless im missing something, i dont see any significant differences…looks the same as the last version to me. unless it hasnt been pushed to my phone yet. it says i have version 2.0 though so idk.

  • Michael G

    Not impressed. Google+ app is still better.

    • hfoster52

      I agree. Its so much of a smoother UI.

  • DanSan

    I guess forcing all those hipster devs at facebook to get off their iSheep devices actually made them do some good for android!

  • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

    The update is a faster, but the interface is still terrible obviously and the animations are not very smooth. Most people won’t notice, but for someone who’s used to Project Butter, it’s just not smooth enough yet. And the useless menu button in the nav bar is still freaking there. They took a garbage app and made it faster, that’s all.

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Schmucker/1498547350 Chris Schmucker

      I’ve noticed the stutter on the animations also. One step at a time Facebook, one step at a time.

      • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

        Scrolling stutters too.

    • mgamerz

      There’s animations now? I am sick of facebook not using the jellybean app transition.

  • http://www.deathbycone.com Jared Kotoff

    Still no contact sync…why?

    W/e i have HaxSync.

  • http://twitter.com/skrewee13 Skrewee Lewee

    Just installed…
    SO MUCH BETTER & IT’S ABOUT DAMN TIME!!!

  • CM

    Immediately force closes on my droid x.

  • Steevka

    QUICK EVERYONE GO LOOK AT NEW FACEBOOK AND GET OFF THE MOGA CONTROLLER SITE AND LET ME ORDER MINE!

  • Scott H

    I haven’t had the Facebook app installed on my phone or tablet in well over a year – have been using FriendCaster for a long time. To anyone that’s tried both, how is this update looking?

  • crookedview

    Updated, but even with all background update options turned off in the settings, the Facebook app STILL has 4-5 services running in the background taking up ~50MB or RAM after I exit the application. What the eff?

  • Zach

    updating now!

  • http://twitter.com/Seilback Michael Seilback

    Vast improvement! Faster and smoother UI.

  • http://twitter.com/turdbogls Turdbogls

    just updated. I dont like the scrolling…seems to scroll much faster than the rest of the UI. Like the instant photo thing though. still wont use it as much as i use Google plus though ;)

  • schoat333

    I bet its still laggy, and buggy.

  • thefullritz

    I get this message the last couple of days when updating apps. Help?

    • Geoff Johnson

      Restart and try again?

      • thefullritz

        Update: Version 2.0 is now live in the Play store. Well it was, then got an error and no longer there, for me.

        So, tell us your thoughts?

        • hfoster52

          Uninstall and try to reinstall.

  • MrSteve920

    They’ve been working on the update for half a year now and they still didn’t take the time to get rid of the old style menu button…

    • CapnShiner

      The majority of Android users are not yet on ICS or JB, so it’s probably there for compatibility.

      • MrSteve920

        I understand that, but they still didn’t bother to update how the old menu button looks. The format they have now is the old grid style menu instead of the list style that is the current standard.

  • SeanBello

    just went live!

  • http://twitter.com/ChrisDoerman Chris Doerman

    Finally!

  • http://twitter.com/BigDaddyBesbris Ethan Besbris

    I’d love to see an official holo-styled Facebook application.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-Gulyas/709632554 Daniel Gulyas

    It’s live.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=500698751 Paul Hansen

    It’s live! :)

  • xzombiex66

    Please tell me this finally has a tablet UI!!!!

    • Derek Ross

      Nope. Just updated my Galaxy tab 10.1 and it’s still a garbage interface. I won’t use this app until they make a tablet specific interface that utilizes the screen real estate, right now it’s so silly looking on a tablet it looks like a 3 year old designed it.

      • mgamerz

        They took the time to make a facebook app that looked great that ran on WebOS, a really sucky OS (okay, well nobody used it, and it lagged really bad loading anything), but they can’t make an app for the most used (mobile) OS in the world.

        • Derek Ross

          I used to have a TouchPad, the app was okay. Definitely better than this junk but certainly not great. This new Android app is faster but looks terrible. The pictures in the newsfeed take up the entire 10.1″ screen where I cannot see or do anything else. Overall I am not impressed at all. If any of their developers use this app on a tablet and think it’s good they are no good at their job (and are also stupid :) ). They need a tablet UI with 2 different panes like you would see in an email client where you get a shorthanded feed on the left and expanded view on the right. Until you have a system like that, the tablet app is worthless because you can view 20x more data on any single screen and more easily by just going to facebook.com. They need facebook.com-like usage with tablet UI accessibility

          • mgamerz

            Yep I agree.

        • athom07

          Facebook didn’t design the Facebook app for WebOS so theres your answer. That was in house at HP.

  • http://www.facebook.com/steven.elliott.524596 Steven Elliott

    FINALLY!!!

  • DanWazz

    Wish I cared. The old one was such a piece of junk, it’d be cool to see how they improved it.

    • La2da

      So…you…do care?

      • DanWazz

        I guess. I used to use fb and the app. It was crap and frustrated the hell out of me. I don’t use fb anymore, but kinda wished I did, just to see the app become not steaming pile of crap.

  • JabroniUNM

    Want contact integration on stock android

  • Christian

    I’m not gonna lie, it is a lot snappier than it was before.

  • Mark F

    Update is live !!!!

  • http://ndavis.nerium.com/ Nerium Brand Partner

    Does it finally have a scrollable widget???

  • Tony Harper

    Video Calling?

  • snogods

    wonder if it will have the ability to sync contact pics again without having to use a 3rd party app like haxsync?

    • Marc

      They have the option to sync contacts, doesn’t seem like it does anything though.

    • Lakerzz

      I thought that Android took out the ability to sync Facebook contacts in ICS and above.

      • snogods

        well they definitely changed something… i just figure if haxsync was able to find a way to make it work, seems like fb certainly could too?

        • http://twitter.com/Belatukadro Justtyn Hutcheson

          Haxsync, SyncMyPix, etc. all go through your FB contacts, match them by name to your Google contacts, then download the pics to a directory and auto-link them to your contact. There’s no real “integration”, its more “automation”. You could achieve the same effect manually, though it would be incredibly time-consuming.

          The ability to sync Facebook was not removed per-se, they just implemented API hooks for social networks to use the People app in general, rather than baked-in support, and its up to the developer to implement the hooks. Facebook has implemented them in general, and you can still link contacts and it will auto-update pics. I still don’t think they are high-res though, so they’re either tiny or look like crap blown up.

          • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-James-Ward/100000069573546 Daniel James Ward

            Try facebook contact sync from the market, it’s perfect

  • ArrTooDeeToo

    Tablet UI?

  • thedonxr

    If that was my car I would punch that kid on the hood in the face. No respect… I don’t even lean against mine…

  • Shawn Brandow

    play store says last update was Dec 6th…

    • Andrew Remmers

      “Live later today”

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Daniel-Gulyas/709632554 Daniel Gulyas

    I will actually install the Facebook app for the first time in months… Took them long enough.

  • http://katzmatt.com/ Matt Katzenberger

    Looks like we still don’t get any love for tablets…

  • mmoreimi

    the mysterious display-to-edge phone…

  • joejoe5709

    Nice. Can’t wait to check it out!

  • Butters619

    Fina…f***ing….ly

  • http://androidforums.com/members/kwest12.html kwest12

    I’ll believe it when I see it… what can I say, Facebook has made me a cynic.

  • AJ

    I wonder what phone that is! lol

  • RAZR_FANN

    That phone should be the Galaxy Note III. I don’t know how a 6.3″ screen is going to be usable unless there are on-screen keys and virtually no bezel.

  • Chris Long

    Funny, because a review as recent as today says it’s still horrible

  • igotgame

    My thoughts are…I wish Facebook would crash and die a horrible internetz death

  • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

    This will or won’t prove the Existence . . . . of an Unsuckable facebook . . .

  • Daniel Maginnis

    it’s been getting incrementally better. the main complaint i always have is varying performance issues. sometimes it loads up instantly and everything is cool. some times i will click on an image, even just to read the comments, and it will take literally 45 seconds. that’s on wifi or on LTE. i dont get it. and i’m sure it’s the app, cuz i can swap over to m.facebook.com and it works perfectly fine almost all the time.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100001498030551 Callum Shellcock

    “We’re always working to make our apps faster”

    If that’s true then they’ve been doing a terrible job.

    • Daniel Peragine

      Some progress is better than no progress, though.

    • http://www.facebook.com/kartracer3886 Tim Simmons

      I agree. Every time they try to make the app faster it seems to always get slower. Over the last year or so the app has been awful. But i just downloaded the new update. Only played with it for a minute but the pics do load right when you click on them. so thats a good sign.

      • http://twitter.com/havens1515 Randroid

        Scrolling seems REALLY choppy to me though. (Again, only playing with it for a few minutes)

        • S2556

          scrolling was butter on my phone

          • MicroNix

            I was going to reply with the same thing. Scrolling is absolutely perfect now! I can finally say that the iOS app is no better when it comes to how this scolls. And the pics load like instantly!!

            Well done Facebook (for once!)

        • http://www.facebook.com/cory.pitkavish Cory Pitkavish

          scrolling was smoooth on my gs3

    • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

      They lie.

  • xzombiex66

    Google+ > Facebook

    • Daniel Maginnis

      true story, but “if a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?” i post all of my images to G+ because of unlimited, free storage while uploading with the proper settings in picasa. also, i dont like the idea of fb taking my pics and using them in ads. even when i post the link on my fb account, there is never any remarks or +1s.

    • BSweetness

      Indeed. But Betamax was also better than VHS.

      In the end, it doesn’t matter what’s actually better. What matters is which site more people adopt and use. That’s where the problem lies for Google+. It’s the superior platform, but most people who want to use a social network along those lines already have and use Facebook, and more importantly, their friends already have and use Facebook. Convincing most people to switch from something they’re already familiar with, and where they already have most of the connections with people they want, is a nearly impossible task.

      • xzombiex66

        I agree

      • Geoff Johnson

        Seriously, who can disagree with what he just said?

      • http://twitter.com/RxREX_ ركس

        “but most people who want to use a social network along those lines already have Facebook”

        This is where your otherwise accurate description loses its weight. G+ & FB are along different lines of social interaction. They can be similar in some aspects but they are very different. Between Circles, Hangouts, Communities & its integration to Google’s other services, G+ is a different beast.

        If your argument is that Google+ has a different social graph than Facebook, on this we can agree. To that end, Google+ aims for a different type of social graph. It isn’t an apples to apples comparison.

        • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

          You got it. While I like G+ better, it is actually a much different service than Facebook.

        • BSweetness

          That’s true in many respects, but most people actually see the two as an apples to apples comparison, and just like the argument about which is better, how people view the sites is what matters. Most people see Google+ as a social network like Facebook, but they see it as a social network that far fewer of their friends actually use, and one that would largely duplicate what they already do on Facebook, so they dismiss it. Sure they might find some of the added features of Google+ to be interesting and desirable, but not enough to abandon the “life” they’ve already established on Facebook.

          • brando56894

            Most people don’t want to use G+ because they’re friends aren’t on it, also they expect it to be just like Facebook, which it’s similar but also completely different. So most people try out G+, find it awkward and say “it’s a ghost town” because they don’t know anyone that uses it. When in reality the beauty of G+ is the fact that it has the ability to be both a small private community, a large private community and a large public community at the same time. I tend to post 90% of the things that I share as public and then people who find the things that I share interesting circle me and I may do the same for them if I like the things that they post.

            I have about 300 “Friends” on Facebook, only about 5-10 of which actively use G+, yet I have about 100 people circled on G+ and around 10 of them I have never met in person but interact with all the time.

            IMO G+ will eventually win out, it’s taken Facebook 7 years to reach the point that it’s currently at and it was started out of nothing. Google has been established for over a decade so they have the resources to keep adding new features at a staggering pace.

          • http://profiles.google.com/k3gman Keg Man

            not only that, but they are doing a good job integrating g+ with everything and has much more potential than fb for additional ways to integrate with other services. (the way the play store, g+, youtube and etc are integrated together)

      • http://twitter.com/havens1515 Randroid

        No, it’s actually more like CDs were better than tapes.

        Facebook (tapes) is established, everyone has it and has used it for a while. People are starting to get sick of it, and want something new. Enter Google+ (CDs.) A superior product that may take a while for people to switch to, but once they do switch, they’re unlikely to go back. And once G+ has a good API, the adoption will become much simpler.

        • BSweetness

          It would be great if things ended up going that way, but for most people (and that’s the key – most people) the differences between Facebook and Google+ aren’t like the differences between a cassette tape and a CD. It’s not a major jump from one type of technology to another. Google+ is more like the evolution of the same technology that Facebook is. In that respect, Google+ can be seen as the MiniDisc to Facebook’s CD. The CD came out first, and the MiniDisc was a refinement and an improvement of the CD. But for most people, the difference wasn’t noticeable enough to make the jump from one to the other, so they just stuck with the one they already knew and already used – the CD.

          Most people want to see what they’re friends are up to and let their friends know what they’re up to, and they want to do so in fairly basic ways. When approaching the two sites from that perspective – the perspective of the general public – the two can easily be seen as essentially the same type of site. And in the end, most people will stick with the one they already know and are already established on. It’s going to take a new type of social site that is more like the jump from the CD to digital music for people to abandon Facebook in any large numbers (or a major problem/PR disaster on Facebook’s end of things, which could very easily happen).

          Again, I definitely think Google+ is the superior platform, but it’s something that I barely ever even check. Why? Because only about a dozen people that I know use it with any regularity versus the hundreds that use Facebook every single day.

        • http://Twitter.com/ContestsAccount bigrob60

          Except when the CD gets a huge scratch/gouge and won’t play anymore. The disk repairers can only do so much. With cassettes, if the tape broke you could at least mend it and it would play flawlessly. Just being devil’s advocate here.

          • http://twitter.com/havens1515 Randroid

            if you do so much as touch your finger to a tape it gets damaged enough that the part that you touched won’t sound right anymore.

            Plus, it’s a metaphor, so who really cares about such specifics?

        • mgamerz

          A WILD MUSIC INDUSTRY RIAA APPEARED

    • CapnShiner

      The only way I see Google+ overtaking Facebook in number of users is if they release a reliable one-click tool to migrate EVERYTHING from a Facebook account to a Google+ account. Or if Facebook screws up badly enough.

      • http://profiles.google.com/k3gman Keg Man

        eventually we as android users, will practically be forced into using g+. Like the play store’s approach to commenting on apps. Eventually everything will be integrated so nicely that more people will give it better shot.

  • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

    Did they get rid of the useless extra menu button in the nav bar?

    • http://www.facebook.com/people/Chris-Schmucker/1498547350 Chris Schmucker

      Nope

  • http://fabdroid.com Andrew Xie

    Where can I get that phone?!

    • http://profiles.google.com/adamtruelove Adam Truelove

      Just give Google another couple years.

    • http://twitter.com/jdhas jdhas

      Seriously. I LOVE these renders.

    • Jonathan Bunch

      DAT Phone!!!

    • Good_Ole_Pinocchio

      OMG NO BEZEL! . . .

    • rohicks

      Rumored Facebook phone…?

    • http://www.facebook.com/vanhouse David VanHouse

      What is so good looking about that phone?? Its just a damn rectangle lol. I dont think you could be more basic in design

      • brando56894

        Almost no bezel, so about 99% of the front of the phone is screen real estate.

        • capecodcarl

          Where would you put the Verizon logo so the user knows he is using the Verizon Wireless network anytime he looks at the phone?

          • michael arazan

            I hate it when I forget which network I’m using, I wonder if there is a way they could remind me of that network every month instead of branding it on my phone. Seriously, if verizon gave me 10-20% off my bill every month, I’d have no problem with their crappy branding, I’d even use a case with their logo on it, just keep it off the phone.

      • SexciiP

        But it’s a BIG rectangle :D

      • michael arazan

        It is true edge to edge screen, almost looks like one of the fake sg3 picture I saw rumored back in spring.

    • Stevedub40

      LOL, I was just thinking how cool that would be if that was an actual phone.

    • CapnShiner

      Those are renders and nothing more. Do you see 1) speaker 2) camera 3) proximity sensor 4) notification light 5) branding? Unless someone finds a way to integrate all of that into the screen, this phone render cannot become reality. Use your brains people.

      • Ian Ward

        YOU’RE NO FUN.

  • https://twitter.com/paladaxar Paladaxar

    about. time.

    • http://www.facebook.com/danny.sullivan.12382 Danny Sullivan

      This.