This isn’t going to be the last time that Facebook will make changes to the News Feed but this time it is for good. News Feed which has already seen major tweaks in this year to keep advertisers, publishers and users happy, has been tweaked keeping in mind the users of the developing world.
Facebook informs that people in the emerging markets are joining the Internet in a staggering manner with a mobile and a 2G Internet connection. In order to make sure another billion people can connect using Facebook, the networking giant has worked on a way that makes sure people can load and scroll through News Feed on any connection speed. “We’ve worked on a few updates recently to improve the experience so it works seamlessly and quickly for people in all parts of the world.”
Facebook has developed an open-sourced Network Connection Class, which is a way for Facebook to determine how fast a user connection is. The open-sourced program will help Facebook to determine if a user is on a slower internet connection that won’t load videos; News Feed will then show you fewer videos and more status updates and links.
In addition to this if the News Feed is loading slowly, Facebook will download the story the user is currently looking at, rather than download a series of News Feed stories. But there are times when the network connection is real bad and fails to load any News Feed stories. For such instances when you leave News Feed and then come back again on a bad connection, Facebook will display previously downloaded stories. “You can scroll down and see stories from your previous visit to News Feed until you are able to connect again to a mobile network.”
However, this doesn’t mean Facebook will load stories that have been already seen by wasting more data. This change was incorporated on user feedback that preferred seeing stories that may have loaded on a previous visit than not see any stories on News Feed.
Facebook is also investing in the best image formats for photo loading. “We recently moved to a Progressive JPEG photo format which allows us to start showing lower-quality versions of photos while they’re still downloading, so you can see some of the photo instead of nothing.”
All these major tweaks have been made keeping in mind that emerging markets are still struggling with internet infrastructure and at the same time reducing data costs.
Facebook has figured out that its next billion users are going to come from emerging markets that have an Internet infrastructure problem. Nonetheless, mobile is the game changer and Facebook has been focusing on the consumers in developing markets for years now. The latest changes only show the seriousness and desperation of Facebook with mobile in focus from the emerging markets.