One of the most popular online activities is social networking. For example, Opera has released statistics that show Facebook and MySpace are two of the top five destinations for U.S. web users of their Opera Mini product.
And its only getting more popular by the minute. Both MySpace and Facebook have developed applications for the iPhone — argued to be the most web-friendly mobile device to date — designed to push usage further than ever before.
But not just the iPhone; there are Facebook applications for Windows Mobile, Palm OS, and BlackBerries; with a very high usage rate being totuted for the application on all of those platforms.
Facebook for the iPhone
Last year, official applications for the iPhone were mainly web applications — websites that had utilized complex scripting called AJAX to make the web page feel like a native application even though it was not. Facebook was one of the more popular one of these for the iPhone and had gathered a huge following. With the release of the iPhone Software Developer’s Kit (SDK), it only made sense that Facebook would move to becoming a native application, and adding a few new features along the way.
The Facebook iPhone application takes social networking and grafts it on top of the iPhone phone book for an integrated experience that has led some to even think that it could replace the default contacts application.
Much like the iPhone Facebook website, the application allows for several types of messaging options: call, SMS, send FB email, and view presence. It looks like any other iPhone application, so there is very little in terms of learning a new user interface that has to be done as well.
Facebook for iPhone is available via the iTunes AppStore. This can be accessed on iPhone, iPhone 3G, and iPod touch devices that have been updated to iPhone 2.0 or by using iTunes 7.7 on a computer.
Facebook for Windows Mobile
Facebook for Windows Mobile takes a similar angle to the native iPhone Facebook application. Macrospecs, Inc. has created an application called FriendMobilizer. This doesn’t integrate into the Contacts application, but it does provide a center for interacting with Facebook contacts from the mobile device without visiting the Facebook website.
FriendMobilizer features the ability to edit status, approve friend requests, check wall and inbox, and get notifications right to the Windows Mobile Today Screen.
This application works for both Windows Mobile Standard (non-touchscreen) and Professional (touchscreen) devices. It is free, and can be downloaded from the FriendMobilizer website.
Facebook for Palm OS
While the Palm OS has not seen a major update in some time, it is still a capable and popular platform — as evidenced by the success of the Palm Centro smartphone. Recently a Facebook Mobile application has been created for Palm OS devices, and has taken off with many users.
Like the FriendMobilizer application for Windows Mobile, Facebook Mobile for Palm features:
- The ability to send and receive messages
- View and post status updates, photos, and videos
- Read and write Wall posts
- View News Feed
There is also a “Contacts” tab that aggregates friends phone numbers so that it can become a central contacts application for all contacts, not just Facebook contacts.
Like other Facebook applications, Facebook Mobile for Palm is free, and can be downloaded from the Palm website via PC or mobile.
Facebook for BlackBerry
Even those who use their mobiles more as a corporate device than personal one have found a Facebook application.
Similar to the applications on other platforms, Facebook for BlackBerry enables messaging, status updates, picture uploading, and an interface that mimics the Facebook website.
It is compatable with recent BlackBerry devices such as the Pearl, Curve, and 8800 models. To download, visit the Facebook for BlackBerry website.