Facebook's Mobile f8
Facebook made a number of big announcements yesterday at its first F8 Developer Conference since 2011 but three projects got almost all of the attention.
The Audience Network will use Facebook user data to select and serve ads within almost any mobile app. AdExchange published an account of how the mobile network will work, an ambitious plan that includes customized native ads along with standard formats. The network is not limited by user logins since Facebook will be targeting based on device ID. Forrester analyzed the potential for the new network, where the benefits of extensive data and customization need to find both user and industry acceptance at a justifiable cost to advertisers.
The announcement of anonymous app logins is regarded as a great move by Facebook; reducing friction at a critical point by allowing users to identify themselves without making any personal data visible to the app developer (or worry about the app posting on their behalf). Mashable pointed out that it won't be at all anonymous to Facebook who will gain additional information about which apps people are trying and using. Facebook also announced new privacy controls over conventional logins.
The most controversial of the big announcements involved App Links, Facebook's effort to establish the standard for apps to call each other. Pando provided an explanation of how App Links will work. While Mark Zuckerberg argued that his objectives differed from those of Google the Business Insider pointed out that creating 'urls' for the mobile web might best be left to Google and Apple along with their control of Android and iOS.