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Facebook for iPhone

An iPhone application by Facebook.

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Facebook iPhone App = Facebook Minus the Clutter

  • Jan 17, 2010
  • by
I'm not the most avid Facebook user, but I was totally blown away by this app when I first got it on my iPhone 3GS a few months ago.  After playing around with it for just a few minutes, it's easy to see why this is one of the most highly rated apps in the app store, and why such a big deal was made when Facebook developer Joe Hewitt, the man who pretty much single handedly put together this app, announced that he would stop working on this app stemming from frustrations with Apple.  Fear not, though, other Facebook developers stepped in and have been maintaining what Joe Hewitt created well. 

While most well-established websites create mobile apps to supplement their website, as just a mere on-the-go pacifier until the user can make his or her way to a computer, Facebook's is so much more than that.  In fact, so much more that -- surprise surprise -- I actually prefer using the app on my iPhone over the website.  The user interface is very sleek and compact, and everything about it seems like it would be very intuitive to the average Facebook user.  It just clicks right away.

When I visit the website, I don't really care for what's going on in the bars to the left and right of the page; I only look at the feed in the center, and even then, I only look at certain things within that feed.  For instance, I pay attention to status updates and other picture, video or link posts, but tend to gloss over who became friends with who or fans of what.  Well, lucky for me, the app cuts out all of the latter and only shows the former.  Same goes on profile pages, too.  The app is Facebook, except succinct; to the point.  Pretty much Facebook minus the clutter


Besides the decluttering, here are a few other aspects of the app that I like over the website, plus a few app-only features:

  • Homepage Grid -- This grid takes me straight to all the places on Facebook that I would want to go to, including the news feed, my profile, friends, pictures, inbox, friend requests, etc.
  • Favorites -- If there are certain friends whose pages I visit the most, I can make a shortcut to their page on the grid.
  • Notifications -- Right at the bottom of the page and straight to the point.
  • News Feed -- Like I said, uncluttered.  And this may seem like a little thing, but I absolutely love how when I click on a friend's profile, link, or view the comments on a post in the news feed, I can go back to the news feed without having lost my place.
  • Like -- Liking posts is more fun than ever!  Okay, it's not that fun, but it's slightly more amusing.
  • Friends -- Friends are displayed in a super compact, organized fashion.  If my friends have their phone numbers on Facebook, I have the option to call them from the app, too.  Fanpages, groups, birthdays and events are also organized in such a way.
  • Viewing Photos -- The photo viewing feature is far superior.  They can be scrolled through just like in the iPhone photo gallery, and they can be zoomed in and out.
  • Uploading Photos & Videos -- Uploading photos is pretty fun, too.  They can only be done one at a time though, so think of it as twitpic or something.  The coolest part is being able to tag people on the spot.  Same can be done with videos, too.
  • Push Notifications -- Certain notifications can be pushed and the user can choose which ones, including messages, wall posts, friend requests, photo tags, etc.  Not sure how much battery this feature gobbles up, but it's nice to have the option.
  • Sync -- Users can sync up their phone contacts and Facebook friends, including adding Facebook photos to contacts, and having Facebook friends' homepages be made to their Facebook page.  Some issues about privacy have been brought up, but I say if you don't want someone to have your information, then it probably shouldn't be posted on Facebook, or your privacy settings should be edited so that only select people can see certain information.

There are a few of downsides though -- I can't search for new friends and groups (Update: scratch this former comment because @thomas666 just schooled me on the "Everyone" and "Pages" tab in the comments section. Mind blown once again!) and I can't share links and Youtube videos the same way that I do through the web.  If I wanted to stop seeing certain users/spam in the feed, I can only hide or delete them on my computer.  However, those are no biggies for me at all.

I would rate this app a +5, but it's hard to rate such a piece of technology so highly when I know that it's going to be rapidly changing, hopefully and most likely for the better, so a +4.5 it is.  Who knows what they have in store for us next.  I think whoever's working on Facebook's site should have a chat with whoever's working on Facebook's iPhone app and get some pointers; the website could use a few of these features ;)
Facebook iPhone App = Facebook Minus the Clutter

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February 04, 2010
Great Review Devora, I do have a Facebook account and I'm not great around it either but it's certainly a great site to catch up with friends and family but I try my best to be in there also. I can' say much about this app being that I don't even own a IPhone but I love to get one soon cause you make it sound like a must-have.
February 07, 2010
Thanks, Mz Jen! I'm the same way with you about Facebook. And if you ever decide to get a cellphone, you must know this... It's life-changing and potentially addictive! ;P
January 26, 2010
Okay, I know I asked you do a guest post review. But in reading this great review, I thought since you have an IPHONE you could download the NEW Wine Enthusiast App and give it one of your well thought out reviews?? I have an old crack berry that does not work with the new app. I have a couple other contributors and adding your voice would be great. Let me know what you think! Cheers!
January 26, 2010
Oooooh, I just got my iPhone not too long ago, so I've been experimenting with apps. I currently have several app reviews in queue. I'll give that Wine Enthusiast App a look-see, too! Thanks! :)
January 25, 2010
I have used facebook on my blackberry, but not the app...straight off the browser. It is far from user friendly. However, I think I will pass on the app, I thought about downloading this one, but it will only make me that much more tethered to the damn thing. Hehe.
January 26, 2010
Facebook isn't that addictive :P  I check it out when I'm bored, and I use it to share things, like my Lunch reviews and photos, with my buddies! :D
January 19, 2010
You know I'm a diagnosed iPhobe, but I still love reading your passion! The WinMo app has all of the functionality, but it's not quite as "pretty".

I like the "Sync" feature too. It's not in the WinMo app, but it IS part of the HTC phone interface so all of my contacts have the FB pic and I get their "Updates & Events" in the contact cards. Facebook is the great uniter of technology! 

Thanks for a complete review that is also a good read.  You have a knack for doing that consistently. 
January 20, 2010
Aw, my pleasure, even if it's from a self-professed iPhobe! :P That's very cool that FB is part of your phone's interface. I take it that it doesn't have the app then?
January 18, 2010
"I can't search for new friends and groups" Friends > click on the EVERYONE tab or PAGES tab "I can't share links and Youtube videos the same way that I do through the web" Copy / Paste
January 18, 2010
Thomas! So happy to hear from you, especially on here ;)  I still dig being able to share a picture and excerpt with my links, but thank you for opening a whole new world up for me with that "Everyone" and "Pages" tab. Now my mind is really blown and I'm going to edit my review!
January 18, 2010
yeah, as you start punching in the persons name, a list pops up and then you confirm. the only thing i like better about the web version is clicking on links
January 18, 2010
Hahaha... you are cuttiing down a rating because of its potential? So, do you give your boyfriend a +4 until he gets you the ring? ;-) Just joking... you make me laugh LOL............
January 18, 2010
Well, that depends on the size and quality of the rock! Oh, Sharrie, you bring out the badness in me ;P 

Do you use this app?
January 19, 2010
No, I'm not into facebook at all. I've spent too much time on Lunch & VirtualTourist as it is! I need to get a life, lol... As with regard to the rock, whatever size or quality, it is still a rock, nothing more. Rocks are cold, Debbie ;-)
January 20, 2010
I mainly use sites like Facebook and twitter to keep in touch with friends, and better yet, to share my web happenings with them, like when I upload pictures on flickr, or write a review on Lunch ;) I was born into a family of jewelers, so it's in my blood to love rocks! ;P
January 18, 2010
Obviously, I'm not too much into Facebook or Myspace for that matter, I hang around Lunch LOL! but this is good to know. Such is the magic of iphone. We once had the light saber sound effects but it messed it up. Thanks for this, Lady D! Now where's the food? ;-P
January 18, 2010
I'm not into Myspace either.  It's so passe! :P  I do spend a bit of time on Facebook and twitter, though conveniently, not actively.  They both, in a way, glue together my internet existance, and are great outlets to sharing content, say for instance, Lunch reviews (actually, if you look at the pic of there of my wall feed, I'm sharing your Book of Eli review ;).   Ahhhh, social media integration.

And don't worry, food's never too far behind! ;D
More Facebook for iPhone reviews
Quick Tip by . March 12, 2010
Need to add functionality. But is awesome.
Quick Tip by . March 06, 2010
Best friggin' iPhone app out there! So much better than the website.
Quick Tip by . March 04, 2010
Literally the best iPhone app I've ever seen. Go Facebook!
Quick Tip by . January 28, 2010
Overall a great app but it HAS been quitting on me unexpectedly lately. Time for another app update, Facebook...
About the reviewer
devora ()
Ranked #4
When I'm not Lunching, I'm a jeweler, and an all around, self-proclaimed web geek. My passions include social media, the interweb, technology, writing, yoga, fitness, photography, jewelry, fashion, … more
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About this product


The Facebook iPhone website was launched August 2007 and as of July 2008 over 1.5 million people use it regularly. A free application for the iPhone and iPod Touch named "Facebook for iPhone" was launched July 2008. Version 2.0 of this app was released in September 2008 and featured improved services such as being able to respond to friend requests and notifications. Version 3.0 was released in August 2009 and added features such as events, and uploading video with a iPhone 3GS.
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Developer: Facebook
Developer Url: http://facebook.com
Category: Social Networking
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