Facebook Launches New Notifications API for Apps Beta, Updates to Graph API

A beta version of the new "Notifications API for apps" on Facebook.com launches today enables you to send short, custom messages to your existing users through the Facebook notifications jewel. You can send notifications to your users without requesting additional permissions. However, people are in control of the notifications they receive. "The first few times […]

A beta version of the new "Notifications API for apps" on Facebook.com launches today enables you to send short, custom messages to your existing users through the Facebook notifications jewel.

You can send notifications to your users without requesting additional permissions. However, people are in control of the notifications they receive. "The first few times people see notifications from your app they may accept or decline them. They may also choose to opt-out at any time," Bo Zhang wrote.

Facebook says you to test and monitor how your notifications are performing. "In recent tests, people who received high-quality app notifications were five to ten times more likely to click through than they were for requests. Alternatively, people who received low-quality app notifications were more likely to turn off notifications from the app," Zhang said.

"The new Notifications dashboard in Insights shows feedback on notifications sent via this API, including information on turn-off rates. Apps with with exceedingly high turn off rates for notifications may be classified as spam and disabled. You should watch Insights closely to make sure your notifications are well received by users and not in danger of being shut-off," he said.

You can Notifications API documentation for information on implementing, and Notifications Best Practices, helps learning how to make notifications more clear, compelling and useful.

Facebook Notification API for Apps BetaNotification API for Facebook App Beta

new Facebook Notifications dashboard in Insights

Another, Facebook feature that updated today is the "Graph API," which make it easier and faster to access data from the social graph. Here's a summary of the updates:

Field expansion significantly improves performance for API calls and reduces your coding effort for retrieving data from the social graph. "You can now make advanced Graph API queries to get the exact data you need, in fewer API calls. You can also create nested queries, similar to what you can do with FQL multi-queries. The call response maintains data hierarchy, so you don't have to post-process the data either," facebook explains.

Pagination. For selected edges, Facebook introduced cursor-based offset paging. "We'll no longer show the 'previous' or 'next' paging links when there's no new data," adds the company. This translates to faster request processing times, saving you one round-trip every time you page through an entire collection.

To get started, check out the field expansion documentation, and learn more about pagination here.

Facebook Graph API Explorer with field expansion, Pagination