Facebooks F8 developer conference kicked off on Tuesday with their opening keynote. Announcing topics of updates to Instagram, Facebook Messenger, and Facebook’s core service. A central theme surrounded these updates, according to CEO Mark Zuckerberg, is that “The Future Is Private”.
Considering Facebooks past reputation with privacy, it looks like they are stepping it up a notch. Mark was not shy of admitting that people mistrust Facebook, he emphasised all the ways that Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram can help you connect with people that you love.
1. Facebook is Being Redesigned Around Groups and Events
After a recent announcement that the News Feed will be downplayed, we now know more about what that means. The newest updated labelled “FB5” will highlight groups and events at the forefront of the website. Creating a prominent groups tab and a personalised feed from the groups you’ve joined – rather than a generalised update feed from your friends. Group interaction options will show up while you’re browsing other parts of Facebook too.
The redesign will aid in helping people expand their social circles. It will include a feature called Meet New Friends, connecting strangers with things in common and relevant events near you.
2. Instagram’s New Create Mode… and Hidden Likes
Offering more ways to interact with followers while downplaying the stress of statistics and insights. Instagram is adding a new ‘Create Mode’ which will make it easier to share content beyond traditional photos and videos, think quizzes and interactive content. Opening up their in-app purchasing feature to artists, athletes and other creators will now also be able to sell their products within Instagram.
Instagram is currently testing a system in Canada that hides likes on the feed entirely. Placing the focus on the photos and videos you share rather than how many likes they get. If successful in Canada we will see it roll out in other countries.
3. Facebook Messenger and Close Friends
Facebook is pushing the News Feed to the side and bringing Facebook Messenger forward as a new way to keep up to date with your friends outside of direct chat.
You can set status messages or share photos more instantly, it is now easier to arrange offline hangout sessions.
Messenger the app is also getting a huge refresh, taking up about 20% less space on your phone, the new version will be under 30MB. They are also launching a new desktop app for Mac and PC later this year.
4. Facebook Dating
Yes you read that right… Facebook Dating is expanding to 14 more countries and has also introduced a new “Secret Crush” feature (it’s exactly what you expect). You can create a secret list of Facebook friends you’re attracted to, whether or not they have a dating profile. If they’re also using Secret Crush and they add you to their list, Facebook will notify you both that there’s a match.