If you’ve ever browsed through the Facebook News Feed while on a slow internet connection,
you’re probably familiar with the blue spinning wheel. Showing that Facebook is attempting to load something new.
You may also have gotten bored of waiting and closed Facebook.
This is exactly what Facebook is trying to eliminate. With new offline features, they want to keep the News Feed showing new content, and therefore keep people on Facebook.
The new features will save and then display extra content and allow you to write and save comments, even if your internet isn’t working.
In an announcement, Facebook noted that most people don’t scroll through all stories when they look at News Feed.”
Facebook is now testing an update that will save all of those stories you don’t look at when you load up the News Feed. Later on, if you’re using the Facebook app on a slow connection and are waiting for new content to load, Facebook will add those previously saved stories to your News Feed.
That way you get to see content you haven’t seen before while you wait for your internet connection to catch up.
Facebook will rank all the saved stories based on relevance.
When your internet connection kicks back into gear, Facebook will load new stories back into your News Feed.
Facebook is also testing the ability to write comments on your friends’ posts even while offline. Facebook will save your comment and post it when you have an internet connection. Facebook already lets you like and share posts while offline in a similar way.
At the moment Facebook is testing this update on Android and rolling it out gradually. This is because the update is targeted primarily at users in emerging markets, where Android phones are more popular.
Many users in emerging markets, particularly in Asia, depend on 2G mobile internet connections. Facebook hopes that this new update will keep the News Feed interesting for them, even when their connection is poor.
The benefits, however, are not limited to people in emerging markets.
Facebook commented, “These changes will help anyone who is on a poor internet connection — even those whose network connectivity is generally good but who have intermittent connections in places like subways and tunnels, or at large events.” It seems like a good way to keep everyone around the world on Facebook even more.
Written by content manager Meghan Woolley
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