Facebook may have found the key to mobile world domination. It’s Paper.


Facebook Paper imageFebruary 3, the day before Facebook celebrates its 10th birthday (my granddaughter Meagan just turned 10, too), the social media giant released an elegant new app, called Paper. It displays your Facebook news feed – and other personally relevant content – in a simple, beautifully designed format perfectly tuned for smartphones.

Data released last month by Flurry Analytics, whose tools measure usage of the 300,000+ mobile applications it tracks by more than 1 billion monthly active smartphone users, shows Facebook’s dominance.

According to Flurry’s report, smartphone users spend 18% of their connected time using the Facebook app. That’s three times longer than all other social media services combined.

Mobile users spend 80% of their connected time on apps, according to Flurry. As our colleagues at 7/Apps note, smartphone users overwhelmingly prefer to use apps for their online activities rather than mobile friendly websites. A responsive website is essential, too, but for many companies it isn’t sufficient to meet their customers’ mobile needs.

Paper’s design is simple. Reminiscent of news readers Flipboard and Zite, it’s built to take full advantage of smartphone capabilities.

The creative hand behind Paper is Mike Matas, who designed software for the original iPhone and the interface for the Nest thermostat.

I’m an Apple fanboy and Nest user. So I wasn’t surprised to learn an Apple alum was responsible for the design. Matas’ company was acquired in 2011 by Facebook. He now leads creative Labs, a new group of small teams inside Facebook. Paper is Creative Labs’ first product.

If Paper is any indication, Facebook’s second 10 years will be as remarkable as the first.

If you’re a smartphone user, download Paper. It’s a native app that confirms why mobile users spend most of their time using apps.

Click the image to view the new promo video:

Facebook paper video




digital rain

Goodbye paper calendar, hello digital everything!

red calendar
by Brianna McLeod

The year 2011 has been one of transition in many respects. I weaned myself off of a paper calendar/planner that weighed at least three lbs. and was made of red leather (and I loved every ounce of it). At first, I was very skeptical about entering all of my activities, appointments, workouts, birthdays, anniversaries, and basically EVERYTHING only into my iCalendar.

I also became hip and current with my fancy iPhone. Prior to that, I had a cute little slider phone with push buttons, and it was just so adorable. Now I’m a big girl, and big girls use smart-phones. Both of these developments were thanks to 7/Apps LLC.

With today’s awesome technology, I am able to add things on my phone calendar, which is now my planner! I never thought I’d give in and go 100% digital. I love iCloud because when I upload a new event or action item on my calendar, it updates it on my computer and iPad. I can log in anywhere and everything is in sync.

I’m not going to lie and say I don’t miss highlighting my events, birthdays, networking events, volunteering commitments and fitness. I still have these categories color-coded exactly the same; I just don’t get to physically do it. Sad face. I also don’t get to cross things off or place check marks next to them, but I am adapting.

The organization and the convenience pay off when I really sit and think about it. Now I can enter birthdays and anniversaries one time and then have them repeat. I can enter my on-going commitments and they reoccur without me needing to add them over and over. That saves me time, and I can even set reminders! Love that. Thank you iCalendar.

icalTechnology is so fun. There are so many awesome apps you can download and put to good use. Some of my favorites include Shazam and SoundHound, which will recognize a song or artist that you don’t know the name of, and you can even download the cut to your phone right then if you want. I’m also in love with photo editing apps like Instagram and PS Express. You can turn any regular picture into a professional-looking shot. So fun!

When I am out or want to meet up with someone for a movie I use Flixster, which will show you the movie theaters and show times closest to you. Of course getting alerts from Groupon and Living Social is nice because then I can simply purchase a deal from my phone if I want, or send it to someone who I think would love the deal.
It’s exciting to imagine what’s next with technology. There are so many fun things out there that make life more enjoyable, connected and simple.

Brianna McLeod is VP of Operations at 7 Apps, AM:PM PR’s sister firm and office mate.

This blog was originally posted to Brianna McLeod’s Digital World