Facebook F8: Redesigning and hitting 800 million users
Facebook on Thursday delivered an entirely new profile design, called Timeline; a few new verbs to go with the Like button, such as read, listen, watch, run and cook; and a few numbers as well -- among them 800 million.
While the focus of CEO Mark Zuckerberg's keynote at the F8 conference in San Francisco was on the new products, Spotify's CEO Daniel Ek mentioned that Facebook had passed 800 million users. Facebook's chief technology officer, Bret Taylor, confirmed that fact in a news conference after the keynote. But that wasn't before he mentioned during the keynote that more than 350 million people use Facebook on mobile devices each month.
Zuckerberg earlier in the keynote also mentioned that in one day recently, Facebook had more than 500 million users overall, testifying to the fact that indeed, the world's most popular social network's user base is active.
It's that user base, of course, that the launch partners taking part in Facebook's new "social graph" apps and Timeline are trying to tap into. More than three dozen partners built apps for the redesigned, sharing-focused Facebook, including heavyweight names such as Hulu and Netflix in video; Electronic Arts, Zynga, Disney and Kabam in gaming; Spotify, Mog, Rdio, IHeartRadio and upstart Turntable.FM in music.
Noticeably, but not unexpectedly absent, in the music/movies/TV/books/apps side were Apple and Google -- rivals that Facebook seems to be raising its stakes against.
The goal of the new Timeline design and the increasingly sharing-focused apps is in part to get users to spend more time on Facebook for not only their social networking, but also media consumption.
Facebook wants to be the first stop the world goes to in finding music, movies, news, books and even recipes. But while it's competing with Apple, Google and other rivals such as Twitter, it's doing so by making apps outside of Facebook integrate with Facebook, and it's doing so without an app store like iTunes or an app market like Android.
In fact, for now, Facebook doesn't plan on having an app store at all.
"We're not really planning on having an app store," Taylor said after the keynote. "The main way people find apps is though their friends using those apps. That kind of serendipity is what's driving app discovery and every feature on Facebook, really."
Following the keynote, Facebook shared these related links as reference to the various announcements made today:
User blog post: http://blog.facebook.com/blog.php?post=10150289612087131
Developer blog post: http://developers.facebook.com/blog/post/563/
F8 press tab: http://www.facebook.com/f8
-- Nathan Olivarez-Giles
Photo: Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook CEO, speaks at the company's F8 developers conference in San Francisco. Credit: David Paul Morris / Bloomberg