In an announcement made today, Facebook has revealed that it will be launching an app on February 3rd (in the U.S) to rival news aggregator service Flipboard. The paper app is a slick, gesture driven piece which strips away the clutter of your standard news feed and looks set to completely revolutionise the way you interact with status updates, photos and videos. In addition to this you’ll also be able to see news stories from “the world’s best sources”. Follow this link to see the mildly confusing launch video, which seems to draw a bizarre set of parallels between sending a postcard, using a typewriter, a lightbox and this new app.
With the launch of the paper app, Facebook is going directly against Flipboard and it will be interesting to see who comes out on top. Flipboard currently imports news feeds from a huge selection of sources as well as a range of social sites. Currently Flipboard has a userbase of about 85 million users in September last year and is aiming for 150 million before the end of 2014. The quality of Paper is going to really determine the final outcome of who wins between the two firms, what with all the coverage in the news about the launch of Paper, every news site is linking directly to Flipboard, something which is only going to grow their user base for people who haven’t already heard of the service.
One thing that is interesting is Facebooks choice to strip back it’s feed in the paper app. What once started off as being a very simplistic feed of text, photo and videos has now turned into a cluttered mess of adverts, Candy Crush saga invitations and suggested pages or friends. Could this be a signal that Facebook has started listening to its users that perhaps they aren’t happy with the sheer quantity of additional content they are seeing on a daily basis.
This is the first product from Facebook’s new Create Labs. It’s only penned for launch on iOS and in the US currently, no information has been given about a UK launch or availability on Android devices.
Photo Via: Facebook