If you happen to be one of the 900+ million registered Facebook members and are also a keen user of the iPhone, then the chances are high that you are aware of Facebook’s miserable mobile app experience. The official Facebook app has been around for quite some time on the iPhone and iPod touch, undergoing a few design changes along the way, but is not getting any better when we talk about the overall performance.
In fact, when it comes to performance, the earlier, less feature-rich versions were noticeably better than what the Palto Alto based social network behemoth ships today via the official App Store. Every time we load up the App Store and see a Facebook update available, our little eyes light up and our hearts raise at the prospect of having an app that is worthy of the status which the company holds. Unfortunately, that moment is yet to come.
It isn’t all doomed and wasted though, as some good news could be on the horizon, although it is yet to be confirmed by any official Facebook source. At least publicly. If the guys over at The New York Times are to be believed, then it looks as though Facebook is about to release an app that responds to the thousands of disgruntled users that have taken to the App Store review system to complain of the current app’s slow loading times and the often inability to load any content at all.
According to the report, two internal Facebook engineers have lifted the lid on the company’s plans to push out a new version of the iOS app, one that has been totally rebuilt from the ground up with one goal in mind – to be the fast, “blazing fast” to be precise. Although specific and intricate details are not known, the engineers elaborated to such an extent that we know the new app will be mainly built using the native Objective-C language as opposed to HTML5 that currently sits in an iOS shell.
Before all those Facebook loving iOS users get all excited about this release, it looks like the behind-the-scenes stuff is all that will be changed, meaning end users will see nothing but a dramatic speed and performance increase. But that’s better than nothing, right?
If the new app proves to be as fast which this report claims it to be, then it should prove a point to internal Facebook decision makers that opting for a cross platform language such as HTML5 is not always the best way to please the people who actually matter – the end users.