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Facebook updates apps for Android

Facebook updates apps for Android

Facebook has rolled out some fairly important updates for Facebook for Android and Facebook Messenger. First up, the release notes suggest that both apps have received performance and reliability tweaks.

Facebook Messenger users can now swipe left to see a list of who is online, irrespective of what device or client they may be using. The default screen is still the one that shows the entire bunch of active and past conversations. You can now also add friends to Favorites, which will show up on the top of this online friends’ list. On certain phones, the text message feature has been integrated within the app, allowing users to send texts to their phonebook contacts without having to switch to the native text-messaging app.

Currently, the integrated text message feature is available on the HTC One X, Samsung Galaxy Nexus, Samsung Galaxy S III, Samsung Galaxy Y, Galaxy Ace, LG Optimus 2X and Optimus Black. We expect this feature to roll out soon for more phones. In case you have a phone that isn’t on this list, and have been able to update to this feature, do let us know in the comments section below.

Facebook for Android also gets the list of online friends, but unlike Messenger’s swipe capability, you need to tap on the icon on the top right corner on the newsfeed page. The messages section has been given a redesign. If you remember, Mark Zuckerberg had said earlier this month that Facebook is working on a native Android app for the social networking service, and is expected ‘soon’.

The updates for Facebook Messenger and Facebook for Android can be downloaded from the Google Play store.

In the meantime, Facebook has rolled out invites to select users for the Photo Sync service, for trials and tests. Pretty much like the Instant Upload feature on Google+, Photo Sync will immediately upload a picture that you click with the phone or tablet’s camera. However, Facebook has specified that the photos will remain in a private folder “Synced from phone” by default, allaying fears about privacy and security.

There is no word yet on when the Photo Sync service will be rolled out for all users. Do let us know if you are one of the lucky few to have received the invite for the service’s test-run, and what you feel about it, in the comments section below:

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