Apple’s WWDC 2012 had a few interesting introductions on Monday. Retina display MacBook Pro and turn-by-turn directions using an Apple 3D maps program that was “built from the ground up at Apple” are all neat things I look forward to using, but one thing stood out to me and it only reiterates what investors have been saying all along. iPhone has previously fully-integrated Twitter into iOS5 and according to Apple, iPhone has taken a huge share of tweets as a result.
(Yes, that’s almost half of all photos uploaded to Twitter)
The announcement came on Monday that Facebook is going to be fully integrated into iOS6. Not only will users be able to upload photos directly from photo albums and post content from websites and apps, but now can also update a status via Siri.
Now that Apple is going to integrate Facebook into iOS6, we can only assume the same stats as Twitter will be true – that is, a large portion of status updates and photo uploads will be from the iPhone.
Make it easier to engage, more engagement will occur. That’s pretty straight-forward thinking, right?
So, who cares?
An easier interface to interact via mobile means less interaction via traditional browser. As of right now, that’s where the advertising is for Facebook. Facebook ads are not mobile. Try as they may, they couldn’t even convince investors that they could make mobile advertising profitable, which is one of the main reasons cited for their poor IPO performance last month (never mind Facebook’s grossly high valuation). Twitter claims they have managed to solve this problem by using promoted tweets that “appear” in a user’s feed. Last week CEO Dick Costolo said that the company’s mobile-ad revenue had exceeded ad revenue from desktop users for the first time in a single day.
I can’t help but assume that Facebook desktop interaction will drop as a result of this new iPhone integration, which could bode poorly for advertisers.
But the other side of me keeps saying that Facebook has no true competition. Other social networks satisfy a niche, however I (and others) have spent years building my online “home.” I’ve got thousands of photos, keep in touch with friends from all over the world and I don’t see myself “migrating” to a new social site unless it’s a one-click transfer kind of thing, which would never happen.
What do you think? Does Facebook need to crack the mobile code to continue to be the giant in the social space? Can they learn anything from Twitter? Will this new iOS6 integration prove to be more of a curse than a blessing?