Facebook has launched a new standalone iOS app that sends news from more than 70 outlets direct to users’ lock screens.
The new app will be available first in the US for iPhone users.
For many people, including many 20-somethings who have never bought a newspaper in their lives, Facebook is their front page.
Now Facebook is going a step further with Notify to push news directly to your lock screen as mobile notifications.
The app is quite reminiscent of Twitter and users have to follow publishers or “stations” that will push content throughout the day to their phone’s lock screens.
Facebook’s Notify app is designed to let the news find you
“Notifications are becoming one of the primary ways people first learn about things wherever they are,” explained Julian Guttman, product manager at Facebook.
“Today we are introducing Notify, a new app from Facebook that delivers timely notifications about the things that matter to you, from the sources you love, all in one place.
“Everyone has different interests, so whether you’re into sports, celebrities, news, movies, music or shopping, Notify makes it easy to find notifications you’re into with a broad selection of great ‘stations’ across a variety of categories.”
News alerts that are available include Final Scores from FOX Sports, local weather forecasts from The Weather Channel, new trailers from Fandango, breaking news from CNN and FOX, 10 Best Dressed from Vogue and iconic imagery from Getty Images.
“To create your personal mix of notifications you select the stations from which you want to receive updates,” Guttman said.
“Sources like the ones above will publish notifications through these stations when there are relevant updates. Notify also provides station suggestions based on your Facebook profile, and it’s easy to discover and add new stations at any time.”
Of course, the name of the game is sharing content, which no doubt enriches the experience for the 1.5bn people who now use Facebook every month.
“It’s easy to share your favourite notifications with friends via text, email, Facebook or other social networks, right from your lock screen,” Guttman said.
“If a notification catches your eye when you’re busy or distracted, just swipe to add it to your Saved Notifications list. You can discover all the notifications you’ve received from Notify in the last 24 hours via a convenient in-app feed so you can easily stay up to date.”
Facebook mobile image via Shutterstock