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By 11 October 2011 | Categories: news

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Facebook announced this week that it had finally released a Facebook app for the venerated tablet. Strangely enough, it has been the one app that was missing on the iPad, a bit like a wedding without a bride, at least, until now.

We suspect many users will agree with us when we say it’s about time. The app has apparently been languishing in developer purgatory, apparently ready and waiting to be released to the market, while Apple and Facebook battled to come to terms about the app’s release.

According to the New York Times, the app had become the hostage of a tense negotiation between Facebook and Apple executives for a deal to further integrate Facebook into the next version of Apple’s operating system, iOS 5. The casualty, in this case, was a dedicated app for the iPad, with the delayed release reportedly even prompting one developer, Jeff Verkoeyen to leave Facebook when the finished app showed no real signs of being made available.

According to Facebook, the new app, which is freely available on the Apple App Store, features a ‘new way’ to experience the popular social networking site.

The company elaborated that the app enables users to flip through photos posted on their Facebook account like a photo album, at larger sizes and in higher resolutions, as well as zoom into friends’ photos, updates and stories. Additionally, messages can be sent using a dropdown menu rather than having to go to one’s Facebook inbox first. Casual gamers will also be able to play Facebook games when on the move.

Leon Dubinsky
, a software engineer at Facebook, elaborated that games, apps, groups and lists are in a left-hand menu, with messages and notifications located at the top of every screen. He added that this will enable users to respond to friends and keep up with important updates, without losing their place.

“The app comes with a bunch of other new features: You can chat with friends right from your iPad, for example, or play games and use apps in full-screen mode. You can also watch high-res videos inline, record HD video and stream to Airplay devices,” continued Dubinsky.

The new app will likely only add to the tablet’s already tremendous appeal, finally and officially catering for the popular social network. Let’s hope for an equally innovative - and decent - Honeycomb Facebook app soon.
 

In related news, Nielsen released a report on the impact of social media, explaining that the popularity and influence of social media was increasing. 

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