Facebook is about to release a barrage of stand-alone apps for its services to get you to pick and choose which you’d like to use. Facebook as an ecosystem is potentially too large to bring all of it into one app, so Zuckerberg and the crew will lean (not the Bieber kind) it out and create individual app experiences. The first is called Paper. Yes, you heard about this one a couple of weeks ago.
With Paper, Facebook is trying to get you to use Facebook as a news source or aggregator. Paper introduces a full-screen, immersive experience that is distraction free, leaving you with only the content in front of your eyes. Your Timeline is one section, with beautiful new image, video, and long-form post layouts. But you will also see sections for specific types of news that you’d like to follow from sports to politics to photography. There are stories from mainstream media along with content from “emerging voices.”
In terms of design, Paper looks quite beautiful. It seems almost like a mix of Flipboard, Google Currents, and Facebook Home, which is not necessarily a bad thing. There are pretty transitions, an uncluttered UI, and image-forward thinking all over the place. Below, you’ll find Facebook’s thoughts on how the design works and feels:
- Everything responds to your touch so you can pick up or thumb through stories with simple, natural movements
- You can tilt your phone to explore high-resolution panoramic photos from corner to corner, and see faces and other important details up close
- Fullscreen autoplay videos come to life and bring you deep into the action
- Beautifully detailed covers make it easy to spot articles from trusted publishers and decide what to read or watch.· Articles unfold in the app and appear fullscreen for a focused reading experience
- When you’re ready to tell your own story, you know exactly what your post or photo will look like because you see a live preview before you share it
Since the app isn’t live until February 3, you’ll have to experience it through a web tour here.
Oh, and did we mention that it’s on iPhone only? No word on an Android release. Good job Facebook, forgetting the most popular operating system on the planet, again.