Facebook Mobile event: Software updates explained

No Facebook phone, but changes nonetheless

Facebook reveals its mobile cards, including updates to Android

Last night’s Facebook mobile event left a lot of journalist cold as rumours that the company were due to launch a branded handset we quelled by CEO Mark Zuckerberg. That’s not to say, however, that the event was a washout, with Facebook revealing and cementing its plans for further mobile integration over the course of the next few years.

The big announcements were threefold: ‘Single Sign-on’, ‘Location APIs’ and the ‘Deals Platform’. We've got a run down of what each actually means after the break:

- Single Sign-on
Similar to how Android Devices sync your calendars and contacts from Gmail, this is basically a system Facebook is setting into place so that you need only sign in to facebook once for your info to appear across calendars, apps and websites.

- Location APIs
Essentially: further integration for Places. Facebook’s APIs will allow app developers to capitalise on information about where you are and where you’ve been. This could be in the form of FourSquare-style offers or even games - it’s up to the developers, but the point is that it’ll now be easy to take that data and transfer it to other uses.

- Deals Platform
Bsically a more advanced advertising strategy, the Deals Platform will help those eking money from Facebook ads to do so more effectively thanks to increased location, likes, friends and personality data.

Those are the major headlines, then, but what else? Zuckerberg did give Android lovers some good news, adding that the platform’s app is due for a much-needed update to stay in line with the more polished iPhone app. "Traditionally the Android app has always been a little bit behind," he conceded. "We didn't have a full team working on it, but now we're back on track." Lastly, Zuckerberg took a swipe at the iPad, declaring that it’s not portable. He said: “the iPad is not mobile… It’s a computer.”

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