We're in the holding area here at Facebook's "mobile event" in San Francisco, and so far we've seen reps from the GSM Association and LG -- in other words, we could very well see some hardware. The event starts at 10:30AM PDT, check back at the times listed below!
- Tokyo (November 4th)
11:41AM And we're done! "Go Giants!"
11:40AM A: (Zuckerberg) We don't have any public stats, but it's going well. I shared something before that I wasn't supposed to say, but now it's public -- we know that Places on iPhone is multiples larger than any other location service. You can extrapolate from there. We're pretty psyched.
11:39AM Q: Stats on the usage of Places right now and where you expect it to scale?
11:39AM A: (Zuckerberg) Well, you have to present it to someone directly -- you can't lie about being someplace if you're not there.
11:39AM Q: How are you going to prevent fraud in deals?
11:38AM A: (Erick) Nothing to announce today, but we're working on it -- people shouldn't think about the difference between the browser and a native app.
11:38AM Q: What about single sign on in the browser?
11:38AM A: (Zuckerberg) Nothing to announce today. A lot of these platforms mandate a payment system anyway.
11:37AM Q: I look at single sign on and deals, and I think of payments. Are you planning to enable payments?
11:37AM A: (Tim) No immediate news on foreign deals today.
11:37AM A: (Erick) Android app now -- look in the market now.
11:37AM Q: Two big questions: When will the Android app be available? And how can people access deals abroad.
11:36AM A: (Zuckerberg)We don't get paid for the deals. The deals are user value, and business value. The business can advertise in our ad system, and that's good. We can think about other stuff later, but for now the whole premises is to provide a service -- check in, tag three friends, get a free appetizer. That's awesome."
11:35AM Q: Does all the money from Deals go to Facebook, or are there affiliates, and do users benefit?
11:35AM A: (Zuckerberg) What we're trying to do is make it so that all apps are social -- whatever we end up doing, it works for us too."
11:34AM A: (Zuckerberg) It's so easy -- when it works -- that people will just build it in.
11:34AM A: (Zuckerberg) It's easy to say well, you have single sign-on, how hard is that. But we look at it like what YouTube did to video. You could do video before, but they made it easy -- they made it so frictionless that it really just took off. It's the same with login.
11:33AM A: (Erick) Yes, is the short answer. Many or not most have some sort of login experience built into their app -- it's a top issue that mobile developers wrestle with today.
11:32AM Q: You talked about the fear of people not using their fingers to login -- did you see that actually happen? And with single sign-on and deals, how do you see patterns of behavior changing?
11:30AM A: (Zuckerberg) I don't want to be rude to Apple -- we all love Apple products -- but this is a mobile event and we want to stay focused on that. The iPad isn't mobile in the same way.
11:30AM A: (Erick) The broader question is how do we scale to a tablet form factor without locking ourselves in.
11:29AM A: (Zuckerberg) It's a computer. Sorry. (laughter)
11:29AM Q: I think Apple would disagree.
11:29AM A: (Zuckerberg) The iPad's not mobile. Next question.
11:28AM Q: So, the iPad has been out for a while -- are you building an iPad app?
11:28AM A: That's a natural place for advertising, no?
11:28AM That wasn't really an answer.
11:28AM A: (Tim) If a user is connected to a local business, they'll see it, and if a friend buys a deal they'll see it. We're being pretty deliberate about not pushing stuff on mobile beyond stuff that isn't proximate.
11:27AM Q: You talked about merchants being able to push out the deal, but it looks like the user has to find the deal. Can the merchant find people walking down the street? That's what they probably want.
11:26AM A: (Zuckerberg) There's a lot left to do, feature-wise. When we first launched Places we talked about a lot. We have a small team and we're iterating quickly.
11:25AM A: (Zuckerberg) You have to get a person's information in order to get place information -- it's not public.
11:24AM A: (Erick) All these demos were opt-in -- as Facebook we don't proactively share any information.
11:24AM Q: But not that third parties have access, what steps are you taking to make sure they don't do something wrong?
11:24AM A: (Erick) Everything you saw is the same as what we launched with Places, and this is just an enhancement. We have a clear privacy console, and you can switch it off.
11:23AM First Q: Talk about security and privacy, especially now that you've got third parties with access to location.
11:22AM "Thank you for coming out -- we're going to take some questions. And, um, that's what we've got for you today."
11:21AM "You can take any product area and rethink it to be social, and have it grow virally, and remake whole industries."
11:21AM "So I think that was enough for today. What do you think? The big takeaway is there is a revolution happening in the social space."
11:21AM "I just want to make a point about the velocity of this. We just launched Places a few weeks ago!"
11:20AM Zuckerberg's back! "Everyone who worked on this stuff, can you stand up? Not a lot of people built all this stuff!"
11:20AM "This is just a sampling of the 22 premium partners we're launching with." Chipotle, McDonald's, American Eagle, 49ers, H&M, JCPenney all on the slide, along with others.
11:19AM Golden State Warriors: people who check in will get access to a VIP event with a player.
11:18AM Palms in Las Vegas: Third night free, maybe get a room upgrade.
11:18AM The North Face: charity checkin for National Parks.
11:17AM Alamo drafthouse cinema: when people go to the movies, you get a free pint glass, and the theater with the most checkins will show a free movie to Facebook fans.
11:17AM Partners launching this week / month: Gap is giving 10,000 free pairs of jeans in the future, and if you're late, you get 40 percent off. "We're all going to be walking around Facebook wearing Gap jeans."
11:16AM "I'm walking down the street and I have four friends with me -- I might go to the place that has free apps for four people."
11:15AM Individual, loyalty, friend, charity. Those are the deal types.
11:15AM "To set up the deal I have one page. I give two lines of description -- people are reading this on mobile, I have to keep it simple. Let's talk about deal types."
11:14AM "The deals platforms allows businesses to turn fans and views and eyeballs into dollars." That doesn't sound like a terrifying vision of the future at all.
11:13AM "The discovery method is on the phone, and that's where it'll principally deal. But we're also excited about being able to claim a deal and for deals to show up on Facebook.com." Emily out to demo something else. "So we all know what Tim likes to do in his spare time."
11:12AM "But really, I'm just alone and I want to hit a coffee shop. I look, two clicks, and I get 50 percent off a cup of coffee."
11:12AM "Let's say I'm out with friends -- with location and deals, I can look at this view and see nearby places with deals. Or I'm home alone and depressed -- I can see bars with free beer. Or maybe a few beers."
11:11AM "The basic idea with deals is that we're enabling merchants to push deals out to their customers and hopefully attract proximate new customers."
11:10AM "Let's talk about a new way to use this stuff: deals."
11:10AM "Big apps, little apps, medium apps -- they can all build mobile social local things using these fundamental tools in the platform. We don't even know what they're going to look like!" Homeboy is seriously pumped about this API.
11:09AM "With this search API what we're doing is building a toolkit to do this mobile social local stuff that all these startups are into."
11:09AM "If this were just about the checkin API, all we'd be saying is that we have partnerships with big players. But this is about you guys who don't have big checkin datasets -- that's where search comes in."
11:08AM "Here's the code -- I guarantee this slide won't break."
11:08AM David Fetterman back up. "I was going to show some more of this stuff -- this is what the Loopt app looks like when it's running. It's cool."
11:07AM Backup iPhone not working so well. "We're really excited about this, you'll have to trust me on this -- it's really cool." Laughter.
11:06AM Switching phones now. "What we've found is that users want a social first experience -- rather than look at reviews, people care about where their friends go."
11:06AM "Can I have that backup iPhone, by chance?"
11:05AM "This may be a tough demo."
11:05AM "We're launching single sign-on on Android right now, and here's a preview on the iPhone." And... it crashed! Oops.
11:05AM Sam Altman, CEO of Loopt up to demo. "We integrated Facebook places about a week ago into our iPhone app, and users loved it. We believe that data wants to be unified, and it's better for users if it's all in one place. Facebook is great place for that."
11:04AM "There's a lot of things that show up in your newsfeed, but there's not a lot of location stuff. And that sucks. And when you check in on the iPhone, you only see the people using Facebook places -- not Yelp, or Loopt, or any other great service. This is the future, we should be able to tie it together."
11:02AM "Today, we're opening all three APIs -- the read API, the write API, and the search API." You can read the graph, and write back into graph, get that feedback cycle going. You can also search -- I'm rolling down El Camino, looking for trouble, looking to make something happen. I open Yelp and check into Starbucks." Oh, that's trouble alright.
11:00AM "Location is more than a node in the graph, it's the key of the graph."
11:00AM "I think the real revolution happens when you add new data to the draft. This happened to Facebook in 2007, but we're beyond the desktop now -- we're in the mobile world now. Mobile doesn't have to be a shadow of the desktop -- especially with location."
10:59AM Dave, the manager for the location team up now. He's excited about location!
10:58AM "Today we're launching an update to the Android SDK, and soon we'll update the iPhone SDK. Keep in mind we have 200 million users who really love social."
10:58AM Erick's back. "It's important to call out some of the other companies that we're working with. I'd like to thank them all." Loopt, Yelp, Flixster and more on the screen, and a lot of them will be on Android Market today, and coming to the iPhone soon.
10:56AM He logged in by clicking the login with Facebook button. Audible gasps.
10:55AM "At any moment, 90,000 players are going all in on Zynga poker."
10:55AM Zynga Poker will be the company's first Android app. We're just going to assume he's about to log in to it with a click on the Facebook button. We're wild dreamers, we know.
10:54AM Justin Cinicolo from Zynga up for a demo now.
10:54AM Erick's back! He bought some jeans from the Gap using Groupon last weekend, he says.
10:54AM "This is even more exciting for new users -- they don't want to sign in, they don't want to do any work." Took three lines of code to make it work.
10:53AM He just hit the "login with Facebook" button to log in instead of typing his password.
10:53AM "Take our Android app: a consumer gets a notification for a daily deal, click on it, buy it, and take it to the merchant for a bar code scan. Single sign-on makes that frictionless."
10:52AM "The point really is to introduce consumers to great businesses and services, and we deliver customers in a really effective way. The mobile apps make it a lot easier."
10:51AM Mihir Shah from Groupon up to demo single sign-on.
10:51AM "An improved login experience leads to happier users, who log in more, which leads to better apps. And that's a good thing."
10:51AM Developers can add single sign-on with just one click, and it uses the same permissions system as other apps.
10:50AM "You open Groupon, and click "log in with Facebook" and you're logged in." Sounds great, but we're definitely concerned about security there.
10:49AM "All this is really terrible, but individually we tolerate it for apps we care about. But pain is cumulative. The more friction you add to the login experience, the more users will not log in at all. Single sign on solves that problem -- you never have to log in again."
10:49AM "Even worse, how often have you tried logging in but discovered you've forgotten your password?"
10:48AM "I think it's fair to say no one enjoys logging in, even on a PC. But the experience is ever worse on a phone."
10:48AM "Today really is about pivoting Facebook mobile from being an app to being a true mobile platform. The first thing is single sign-on."
10:47AM Erick Tseng up to talk social. "Go Giants!"
10:47AM "We expect that at a deep level developers will be able to make their apps social, and that's what we're doing."
10:47AM "We're working to give deals to people who are nearby local businesses. There's a lot more details here and we'll get to them"
10:46AM "The second is location APIs. The read API has been open, but the write API has been whitelisted. Today we're going to open up the write API, and any app can build on top of this -- any app can write to the location of Facebook and read on top of that. We think that location will be a fundamental platform element of mobile development."
10:45AM "Right now you sign on and you get a popup, it looks like you're being phished, and then you have to type a password, which sucks. We're making it possible so you can login once, click a button, and be logged in. It's simple if you think about it, but it's actually a fundamental shift."
10:45AM "First thing is single sign-on. Making it so that you have the Facebook app and you're signed in, and once you do that you don't have the hassle with any other app on the phone."
10:44AM "This is the approach that we have, and this is what we're going to stick with for a while. We're a really developer-heavy company, and we don't think everything will be built by us."
10:43AM "Our goal is to make everything social, and we've built this platform. Over the next few years our few is that we'll see other industries become more social... our view is that no matter what environment you're building on, you'll have people there, and it'll be social."
10:42AM "Now I want to talk about some of the platform stuff we're doing. There's been this rumor that Facebook is going to build a phone. What a novel idea, but... no!"
10:42AM "But now we're back to parity, we think." Places and Groups also coming to Android.
10:41AM "Last year we had this idea that because we couldn't put together a full team to put the app together, we'd hire an outside shop. And right before we launched, Google bought the company! So that set us back a bit."
10:41AM "We're also refreshing the Android app, which has traditionally been a little behind." We'll say!
10:41AM "The other things that we're doing with Places is now when you check in you can add a photo -- really easy to do."
10:40AM "The big things we're working on is improving tagging. It's one thing to say where you are, but it's more interesting to say where you are and who you're with... Tagging is a core way to get mainstream adoption of this location software."
10:39AM "Before we get through the platform stuff, we're refreshing some of our apps. First, the iPhone. The iPhone app is on most iPhones, we do some of our updates first there." They're adding Groups, and Places is getting an update.
10:38AM "Our approach isn't to build a specific platform for Android or iPhone, but to go to all these places."
10:38AM "So where are we now? Facebook just hit this milestone where there are 200 million people using Facebook mobile platforms. If you think about that compared to Android or iPhone, that's good. The only bigger platform is the mobile web itself."
10:37AM "Today we are going to talk about the mobile platform we're all building. We have a bunch of stuff to talk about -- I'm going to go through some of it and then invite some of the teams up."
10:36AM "Every morning I walk to work, and this morning this old lady came up to me and asked, 'hey, what are you launching today?'" That was a good moment."
10:36AM And Zuckerberg is up! "Good day to launch some stuff!"
10:35AM They just announced that we're starting in five minutes, and started running a video featuring adorable people doing adorable things in San Francisco with Facebook. Awww, they got pie together.
10:33AM Okay, we're here and sitting down. Facebook is holding this in what appears to be a college library study room -- instead of regular seats, there's a hodgepodge of couches and tables. We do not see Justin Timberlake.