After weeks of Facebook dominating the news for all the wrong reasons, Mark Zuckerberg took the stage at the F8 developer conference to announce a whole series of new features – not just for Facebook, but for the Facebook-owned Instagram and WhatsApp, too.
It’s interesting to note that the new features seem to fall into three camps: sensible functions users have been waiting a long time for; services nobody asked for that will probably find an audience regardless; and settings that are clearly influenced by the public’s new-found concern with privacy.
On that last point, Facebook says it’s developing a “Clear History” function to allow users to purge the data collected from their recent browsing habits. Zuckerberg says that Facebook “won’t be as good” without this data, but recognizes the importance of giving the user a choice of what is and isn’t collected.
Facebook is also adding a full dating service to its platform, as well as a new way to stream live events together with your friends, and a crisis response function to help users share important information from the scene of an event. Additionally, the company is at long last adding video chat to Instagram and group calling to WhatsApp, and working on its own language translation systems. Oh, and augmented reality filters for Instagram!
For more detail on these announcements, check out the F8 coverage from PCWorld.