Facebook Launches New Unified Mobile Website

Facebook, the largest social network on the planet is today launching a new, unified mobile website.

There are currently two versions of Facebook for mobile devices – m.mobile.com and touch.mobile.com. The former is for all devices with touch screens while the latter is designed for more advanced smartphone hardware. From today forward though, m.mobile.com will be the only mobile version of Facebook, writes Mashable’s Ben Parr.

According to Facebook, the reason behind the change is one of innovation. Having to maintain two separate websites that are basically the same backend but with different interfaces isn’t great for helping a company the size of Facebook stay agile.

Facebook’s Lee Byron says the new Facebook mobile site will adapt itself depending on the hardware you are visiting from:

“There will no longer be a difference between m.facebook.com and touch.facebook.com, we’ll automatically serve you the best version of the site for your device,”

Whether end users notice a change at all will depend on what hardware they are using, writes Parr, with only slight user interface changes visible. The real action is going on under the hood. Using Facebook’s own Javascript network named Javelin as well as XML/PHP the changes promise a faster, more sleek user experience no matter the hardware.

The new website is made possible through a new UI framework that incorporates XHP (a PHP extension that incorporates XML), Javelin (Facebook’s lightweight Javascript framework) and WURFL (an open source mobile device database). The framework is dynamic enough to detect the UI and limitations of individual devices and adjust to them automatically.

The changes should be rolling out now – maybe we can ditch the poor Android/iOS apps now!

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