Improved Features and a New Look Facebook Messages Rolled Out; Updates Facebook iOS App; SDK for iOS; Alternate Sizes for Profile Pictures; Sponsored Results API

Facebook Messages received some new and improved features and a new look. "The new side-by-side layout lets you click your most recent message on the left to see the whole conversation on the right. You can also bring conversations to life with multiple photos and emoticons," facebook said. Now you can search by a sender's […]

Facebook Messages received some new and improved features and a new look.

"The new side-by-side layout lets you click your most recent message on the left to see the whole conversation on the right. You can also bring conversations to life with multiple photos and emoticons," facebook said.

Now you can search by a sender's name or keyword from the main messages view. And for easier navigation, facebook also added keyboard commands.

You can see the full list of available shortcuts, type Alt Q on a PC or Control Q on a Mac here.

Also, behind the scenes, Facebook improving the reliability of messages across the site. "To address issues with disconnection, incorrect message counts, and missed and duplicated messages, we recently undertook an effort we called the "mercury project," facebook engineering team said.

You can learn more about Facebook messages, in the Help Center article.

facebook revamps messages

Also, released today, an update to Facebook for iOS app that makes keeping up with friends faster and easier.

Facebook 5.0 for iPhone and iPad "is now twice as fast as the previous version when launching the app, scrolling through news feed and opening photos in feed."

"We've rebuilt the app from the ground up, so now the app opens much faster and your news feed and notifications load right when you open Facebook," the comapny said.

As you scroll down your news feed, all your friends' stories appear faster than ever. A banner lets you know when new stories come in, and you can tap once to immediately see the latest updates.

Tap on any photo and it opens right away. Pull down to close it with a single swipe.

What's New in Version 5.0?

  • Scrolling through news feed is faster than ever
  • New banner lets you tap to quickly see more stories - no need to refresh
  • Photos open fast and close with one downward swipe
  • Instant access to your notifications

To get the update, download it from the iTunes App Store, or get a link to the app texted to your phone.

facebook for ios version 5.0 appfacebook app 5.0 for iphone and ipad

Also, an update to Facebook SDK for iOS now avilable improve stability as well as other minor improvements to the SDK.

This is a released version of the SDK and is ready for use in your apps, and can be downloaded here.

Sponsored Results is a great way for you to drive more awareness of your app, page or place. To this end, Facebook today made available Sponsored Results API for developers to sponsor search results.

You can refer to this documentation for more details.

Profile Pictures in Alternate Sizes

When displaying Facebook profile pictures, the image needs to fit into a specifically allotted space within the UI. Resizing and scaling the image can be a cumbersome process, often resulting in sub-optimal image quality.

To solve this issue, the company now allow you to retrieve user's profile pictures in varying sizes. Alternate profile picture sizes can be queried via the Graph API and FQL.

To retrieve a profile picture in an alternate size via the Graph API, add the optional width and height fields as URL parameters: https://graph.facebook.com/1207059/picture?width=121&height=100.

"This will return a HTTP 302 redirect to a profile picture with a minimum size of 121x100 while trying to preserve the aspect ratio. You can add the URL parameter redirect=false to retrieve just the URL to the pciture. If width=height then a square picture will always be returned," facebook explains.

You can also query for profile pictures of varying size using FQL.

For more information, see documentation for the Graph API User and Page objects, and the profile_pic.

Facebook Profile Picutres in Alertnate Sizes