New Facebook features, iPhone 5 announcement, Google+ API launched?…Friday wrap-up time!

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Been a crazy week with the Facebook changes, Google Plus API release and iPhone 5 metallic case announcement. Grab your cup of coffee or tea or road soda and let’s do a quick overview of the new stuff this week.

Thanks to Mashable for the pic.

Facebook adds subscriptions.

BOOM. Twitter is great for lots of reasons but one is the ability to follow other people’s tweets. I’ve always thought that there should be a happy medium on Facebook rather than the full “friend” commitment currently required. There was a “hack” to follow someone on Facebook. It required you to friend request someone and if they didn’t accept your friend request (and didn’t block you) their public posts would still show in your news stream. This subscription model eliminates the need for that “hack”. Now you can subscribe to someone and get their publicly shared and customizable (see graphic on the right) status updates in your news feed. Nice. There are several things to keep in mind:

  • You have to opt in to allow people to subscribe to you.
  • Here’s the link to do so.

  • Will normal people subscribe to you rather than friend you?
  • Chances are they probably won’t. The friend model still works great for those people who want to share more personal information with each other. Public figures though want to maintain a level of privacy that Facebook profiles won’t allow. Don’t forget there are new security features with subscriptions so if you’re mega-creepy you can be blocked; so keep your pants on.

  • If someone has subscribed to you then they can only see publicly shared status updates.
  • Subscribers can customize the content they see from you. Facebook is clearly trying to change the frequency in which you share things publicly. Remember by doing so you’ll be able to reach a broader audience without having to friend people you don’t know. I likey.

  • Have personal Facebook Pages becomes useless now?
  • Not exactly. Tabs and applications aren’t available on profiles. With public sharing now through subscriptions it sure is easy to see how webrities can really benefit with this new model. Businesses? You still need Pages.

You don’t need to have 25 likes to your business page to get your own vanity URL.

This is great when first setting up your page because you can get your own URL immediately. This can help when setting up your advertising. It’s a minor development but I’m glad Facebook has dropped the requirement.

Shiny new case photos for the iPhone 5 have been released!

Holy smokes stop the press! People scrambling around trying to find a picture of this top secret phone is hilarious. It’s a phone. It’s an Apple product. It will do most of the same crap as the 4. Unless it’s balancing the checkbook and walking my dog, spare me the pre-hype before the hype hysteria.

Google Plus Platform
This graphic is exciting. Right now Google Plus isn't.

Google + API is finally out there.

Okay it isn’t the full blown API yet but for now you can at least query a single user and activity/action. The caveat is it’s read only so no Tweetdeck or Hootsuite integrations yet and you don’t get access to people’s circles. Seems rather pointless for now. I posted a few months ago worshiping Google +. I was hyped up about it but the usage numbers over the past few months aren’t good. I also blogged some time ago wondering if automation would kill Google +. Now I think it will help save it; people are bored. There’s still hope with business pages and further API releases on the horizon but for now it has become a real snoozer.

What was the big development that caught your attention this week? Let’s talk about it.

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