When Facebook makes changes to its platform or services, people pay attention. With over a billion users on the social media site, it’s no wonder that the company makes the news seemingly every week. Just last week on this blog we talked about rumors that the social media platform and Web 2.0 darling could lose upwards of 80% of its users.
This week we wanted to share with you a new story about something Facebook just recently announced. It’s called “Paper.” What is Paper?
Facebook, knowing that the future of the web is mobile access, has been experimenting with apps and other ways of integrating their platform with smartphones and tablets. Paper is the company’s most recent attempt at merging Facebook with mobile.
Taking a cue from the world long before web 2.0 or even the internet, Facebook has designed the Paper app to act as a newspaper for your newsfeed. The app provides users with a customizable interface that lets them track their interests, favorite people, topics, themes, and more. This approach appears to be taking Facebook’s ability to connect with users to a different level. For most users, the information they saw was related directly to their friends and their friends of friends.
With Paper, Facebook now becomes more of a Twitter-like service on phones, giving users access to information they are interested in but aren’t necessarily connected to through their social circles. This could be the evolution Facebook needs to further engage users and provide better services to prevent any possible loss of those users (which we wrote about last week).
How Facebook promotes and supports Paper will likely determine if it succeeds. Facebook has always had an opportunity to be more than just a social media sharing site, and giving users custom access to content from numerous sources is a great way to begin a change in how people use Facebook. If it catches on, you can bet it will become an important part of Facebook’s strategy in the future.