Facebook has just released version 1.1 of its Paper app for iPhone. The magazine-style alternative to the official Facebook app brings many traditional features to the table, including the ability to check birthdays and events, post photos as comments, view group updates and follow the latest coverage from the 9 new article covers.
We learned all the way back in January that Facebook wanted to come through with its very own Flipboard-esque app, and in early February, this aspiration was finally realized when Paper was released for iPhone. But while, on first glance, we naturally thought that Facebook would simply try to clone Flipboard while integrating some of its own features, the company instead looks to be re-constructing the Facebook app for mobile from the ground up, and with the minimalist look having proved rather successful over the past couple of months, the social outfit has now pushed through this sizeable update.
Even though Paper is a cleaner, more fluid and arguably more enjoyable Facebooking experience, one of the drawbacks of using it compared with the proper Facebook for iPhone app is that it’s missing quite a few features. As a Paper user myself, I’ve been quite happy to forgo certain elements in exchange for the benefit of using the de-cluttered alternative app, but having spoken with many others who’ve trialed the app, it’s clear that some of the core, recognized features need to make the transition over to Paper in order for the experimental app to continue to grow.
By adding features like birthdays, events and photos-in-comments – some of the longest-standing Facebook features – Paper is shaping up as a very viable alternative to the traditional Facebook app. By carefully integrating the new features into Paper rather than simply throwing them in without regard, Paper is presenting itself as the kind of social app that users can actually enjoy, rather than feeling like a bloated, exhausted, and force-fed extension of the Web app.
Version 1.1 of Paper can be grabbed right now for the iPhone, and for your convenience, we’ve provided a direct App Store link below. Download it, give it a whirl, and be sure to leave your comments via the usual channels.
(Download: Paper for iPhone on App Store)