New Facebook is coming, and its nudging you to attend more events and hang with your people.
Mark Zuckerberg’s social media giant is pressing the refresh button on a redesign that just might encourage its billions of users to get out and about more in the real world.
As part of an overhaul of its app, Facebook has freshened up its “events” area which, according to The Verge, now offers a cleaner experience for checking what’s happening, where your friends are going and organising your calendar accordingly.
So no excuses for missing a gig. And if you work in live entertainment, there’s potential for more bums on seats.
The events tab has a new home next to the groups tab in the new menu bar layout, and mobile Facebookers should get a hands-on the coming days for iOS and Android devices, though the desktop update is said to be some weeks or months away.
The single biggest change is the new “groups” tab that now resides in the middle row of the redesigned menu bar. Once in, users will get a personalized feed of updates from their fave groups, plus recommendations to join others groups based on mutual interests.
“There are tens of millions of active groups on Facebook. When people find the right one, it often becomes the most meaningful part of how they use Facebook. And today, more than 400 million people on Facebook belong to a group that they find meaningful,” reads a Facebook blog post, announcing the new design. “With this in mind, we’re rolling out a fresh new design for Facebook that’s simpler and puts your communities at the center. We’re also introducing new tools that will help make it easier for you to discover and engage with groups of people who share your interests.”
There’s also a new feature, called Meet New Friends which, as its name would suggest, is intended to help people connect with strangers with common interests, a core FB ambition since day one.
Zuckeberg has its very own endgame, for every person on the planet to be connected through FB. It’s well on the way, with the company reporting 2.4 billion users as recently as last week, roughly one in every three people on this earth. Revenue approached a whopping $15 billion in the first quarter, up 26% from the same period last year.
Facebook is still very much a big deal, but even big deals need reinvention.
Whether all these changes call time on our endless, mind-numbing scrolling (and just maybe, lead to a more productive daily routine), we’ll know for certain after we live with the new features for a while.
Still, The Verge is declaring the end of the News Feed era, which may yet come to pass as the brainstrust at 1 Hacker Way reposition the service as a “privacy-focused vision for the future of social networking,” after years of criticism over its data mining methods. Tech writers also point to the exit last month of Chris Cox, a chief architect of the feed, as a signal to its new, more wholesome identity.