I know I'm probably in the minority here, but I really like Facebook's decision to create multiple apps. We aren't good with thinking of apps as having multiple functionalities. Our thought process is more along the lines of "This app is for this, this app is for this, etc."
Having one app means a lot of features get lost in the app, and people turn to alternative apps (like Foursquare, Batch or WeChat) for functionality.
Edit: To put it another way, what if Google had one app and inside it was GMail, Search, Maps, etc? Facebook sees these as products, not features.
Actually, Google does have an app like that. Search, Gmail, Calendar, Google+, etc - everything except for Maps. It's called Google Search, and is a shell of sorts for web versions of many of their apps, but you can also link the apps to it if you so desire.
You'd find that weird, right? Because you are forcing a significant change of behavior. Similarly, facebook breaking their core functionalities into specific apps is a significant change in how we already think about an existing product. To access Facebook Messages on my desktop, I do not visit messages.facebook.com or FMail. To chat, I don't goto chat.facebook.com. If I did, these app break ups could perhaps make more sense.
I consider myself tainted data point because I am a huge user of facebook on both desktop and mobile(app, not browser). I probably do not use facebook in a similar manner as a mobile only facebook user. They seem to be betting the company on mobile-only facebook user. Even then, their present strategy makes little sense to me because even when I am on mobile, the app switch causes friction and makes me use WhatsApp instead of FB Chat app. Why? Because I know WhatsApp has more reliable chat; and if I must switch apps to chat, may as well switch to the better one.
Bottom line is that with minimal real-estate, at a certain point there's diminishing returns on packing in more features while sacrificing simplicity.
In my opinion it's the obvious move for FB, and they're executing it well.
I think we can agree that most users won't fill their home screen with multiple Facebook apps. If they are moving the secondary FB apps somewhere else, be it a folder or another screen, there's a chance they might move the main FB app too.
I hope I'm wrong.
It's all business, so I suppose all's fair, but it hardly paints Facebook as a hub of innovation. I quit a job a few years ago once they gave me the task of basically cloning a competitor from the ground up. There's no excitement or challenge in that, and I can only imagine some very bored Facebook developers have had a less than notable Holiday season so far.
If the original idea isn't innovative then Facebook's version is orders of magnitude less so.
On Internet forums accusations of "copying" are generally used the same as "stealing" with a morality payload attached. For example, when something is copied and slightly modified people say "fork" to make sure it is read positively. shrug
*Provided it's non-obvious, no prior art, whatever.
I searched and found some stack overflow posts, but they all seem stumped (especially for iOS 6)
How would you detect the lack of WillEnterBackground/DidResignActive to avoid false positives? Just set a timeout and send a "screenshot!" notification if the timeout expires without going to background?
Slide open phone, one touch to open app, one touch to take picture, as few touches as possible to re-engage 2nd party "user" of app.
Multiple apps to see what the pic looks like on my wall? Multiple apps to post snarky comment about pic on my friend's timeline? May be you are right that this is a use-case tech people have but from my observation, I see this pattern repeated all the time on facebook activity of non-tech friends.
On more than one occasion I have elected to use WhatsApp over facebook Chat app because of the app switch. My thinking is "hey if I have to switch apps, might as well pick the better chat app of the two". If this was built into the main FB app like it used to be, I'd be less likely to use WhatsApp.
1. Limitations of Mobile UI
Facebook isn't just one tool, it's dozens of tools combined. On a web interface with PC-browser sized real estate and mouse/keyboard interactions, you can pack a lot more features onto an app and not sacrifice too much in the way of usability and complexity.
With mobile, you have to make sacrifices due to limited screen real estate. As you pack in more features into any single app, you start having diminishing returns due to increased complexity.
2. Desired Tool
So considering the limitations, you have to ask: what function does the user desire in the moment?
Consider some of the FB mobile applications: Pages Manager, Camera, Messenger.
They're all quite unique from one another. On a web interface you might be afforded the luxury of building them all into the same app with a common entry point and framework.
But in mobile, developing all those functions into a single app would be complex due to the 1st point, and unnecessary due to the 2nd.
In the moment, I desire just seeing a friend's timeline while I am chatting with him and being able to go back and forth between the two. Right now I have to switch apps in order to do this. Are you saying that I am in the exception to have this use case or that I am in the exception to find app-switching inconvenient?
I guess Facebook just further validated this mobile multimedia medium.
Personal note: while I'd have been tempted to compare them to Apple or Google in the past, Facebook's turning out to be a lot more like Microsoft for the web, appropriating features or buying companies to Do Everything, even if they're not the best in each vertical.
All the college aged girls I know love Snapchat. Not sure why, but I guess it's just fun.
If it is a popular use, does facebook really want that sort of content? Does facebook think that sexting users would trust them with their photos? If I were to send a sext, I'd certainly consider the (even faint) possibility that the pics could get up on facebook somehow...