Facebook launched its brand new iPhone app called “Paper” yesterday. I downloaded the app as soon as I heard and that was it…I WAS HOOKED! Not only did Facebook deliver the goods they delivered a masterpiece! The simple gesture based user interface turns the somewhat mundane mobile Facebook experience into something fun, addictive, and beautiful. The first time I ran the app it ran a small video that shows how users can pick different “sections” to customize your experience with the app. Sections are basically topics that group different posts together such as Tech, Headlines, Score for sports, and Planet for science. There are others but these are just a few sections users available. Sections can be chosen or left off the list and they can be arranged in any order, giving people a wide range of variety in the way they experience the Paper app.
Once the sections are chosen the app takes you to the first section display. At the top of the screen is the section portion. It shows a section title and an image and title of one of the posts in the section. At the bottom of the screen are the other posts that are part of that section. Users can swipe left to scroll through all the posts in the section or they can swipe up to open up a post and read it. Once inside the post if there is a link to a website inside of the post, a simple swipe up again literally “unfolds” the page in front of your eyes and you are taken to the links destination. Once users have finished reading or watching the video they can swipe down and fold it back up again, swipe down again and they are back to the main page again. Users can also swipe left on the topic section at the top of the screen and get to the next section. Once the next section is visible the posts at the bottom of the screen change to those that are part of the next section. It truly is an amazing interface and it’s so fun to use that I started to get a little addicted to it. I just wanted to keep swiping and swiping to see more and more.
Since this is a Facebook app all the expected functions need to be there and it looks to me like they are. If users swipe down from the main screen another screen becomes visible with a search box and buttons that go to the user’s profile, create post, edit sections, and settings. Also on this page there is a familiar button in the upper right hand corner of the screen. Tap it and users can see all their created fan pages and groups they belong too. On the main page, besides all the items I described above there is also the familiar icons for notifications, message, and new friend requests at the top of the page. They work exactly the way they did in the old Facebook app so there is no learning curve whatsoever with them.
Overall this app has earned my highest reviews. If I could give it more than five stars I would! I’m not sure if it was Facebook’s intention to kill their old Facebook app by launching this one but as far as I am concerned that app is dead to me! Paper is my new default Facebook app. To go back to the old app would be like driving a Ferrari for a year and replacing it with a Toyota. The Toyota will still get you where you want to go but it’s not nearly as much fun to drive!
Facebook Paper is comaptible with iPhone, iPad and iPod touch devies running iOS7 only. It’s available in the app store now: [itunes link=”https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/paper-stories-from-facebook/id794163692?mt=8&uo=4″ title=”Paper_%e2%80%93_stories_from_Facebook”]