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Facebook for Android Tablets: What is the hold up?

Just say "No" to stretched out apps
What we're looking at above is an unedited screenshot of the Facebook app on an Android tablet.   You don't have to look at it for long to notice that it is horribly stretched out and not optimized for a large screen.  I refuse to believe that a company as large as Facebook, who has had an Android app for years now is incapable of producing a tablet app for a tablet OS that has been available since February 2011 when Android 3.0 Honeycomb was released.


What makes it nonsensical is that Facebook recently released a tablet app for Windows 8.1 RT. This is a far less popular OS that has only been available for just over a year.  The iPad app has been available since 2011 and received quick updates to retina and iOS7 standards.

Windows 8.1

Android 4.3

iOS 7
Looking at the above screenshots you can see that the iOS app has already received the flat iOS 7 look, the Windows 8 app is cleanly optimized for its screen, and the Android app is just scaled up and stretched out.

Windows 8.1

Android 4.3

iOS 7
In these screenshots we simply see the software keyboards added.  This is the only area where Android comes out ahead and it's not due to the Facebook app. Notice that both the Windows and iOS apps fall within their respective OS's visual guidelines.

Windows 8.1

Android 4.3

iOS 7
Looking at the above screenshots, you can see that the Windows and iOS apps clearly make better use of the available screen space.  The Windows app making the best use of space by a large margin with the iOS app right behind it.  The Android app is once again a stretched out mess and unlike the other two versions as it is clearly not optimized for the screen size or the OS.  It does not look like it follows the Android visual guidelines established since 4.0 Ice cream sandwich two years ago.  Visually it resembles a bad Linux port instead of a polished piece of software created by a multi-billion dollar company. One who has no issue rapidly adding things like advertisements to your wall within the app itself.  Maybe they are still not over the HTC First and Facebook Home fails and are taking revenge on Android fans.

Windows 8.1

Android 4.3
iOS 7
Start writing a post and the Windows app gracefully slides a drawer from the right side of the screen (which actually falls in line with Androids way of doing things) while the iOS app beautifully pops up a small and non intrusive widget.  The Android app simply switches to a stretched out full screen interface that there is no need for on a tablet.

Facebook Tablet on WebOS
To add insult to injury even the long dead WebOS had a Facebook Tablet app in 2011.  This one was released by HP but was rumored to have been co-developed with Facebook.  The app fit in perfectly with the Luna guidelines and while it does not compete any more feature wise, it deserves a special mention for predating all other Facebook tablet apps and looking great while doing so.

 There are some 3rd party Facebook apps available but at this time the only one worth mentioning is Friendcaster for a true tablet interface.

Friendcaster for Facebook
At this point in time it would be ludicrous to believe that a large corporation such as Facebook would not have the time or resources to develop a proper tablet app.  Especially when less popular OS's have received them in a much shorter amount of time. Chalk it up to willful ignorance on the part of Mark Zuckerberg and company and please, feel free to give those one star reviews on the Play store and Amazon app store.  I'm sure that Facebook will appreciate the valuable feedback.

In the meanwhile, check out my other article on companies who will happily give you a tablet experience on Android.



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