Facebook’s decision to kill notifications has had lasting effects on developers, effectively killing most virality for the application Platform (although there are still plenty of applications growing through feed optimization). The other major change that developers have been preparing for is the shift of requests from the homepage to the inbox. Now Facebook has updated the Developer Roadmap, stating that the requests “will be transitioned to a new notification area”.
What that new notification area will look like is unknown, however developers are definitely on edge as the last viral channel is being moved to a new place. Will Facebook promote the new “notifications” area (that’s for application invites and requests, not the traditional “notifications” which got deprecated on March 1st) from the homepage? Or will developers get their last distribution channel outside of the stream relegated to a subpage?
Facebook is trying to balance the needs of developers while simultaneously ridding the Facebook Platform of spam. Additionally, Facebook has made some subtle changes, highlighting that the removal of left-hand profile boxes (leaving application tabs as the only remaining profile integration point) will be moved from “Early 2010” to “Mid 2010”, whatever that means.
Finally, Facebook’s new privacy settings that were first demonstrated at the f8 conference a couple weeks ago, will be pushed out on June 1st. Many developers have told us that they believe this change will benefit Platform developers significantly, in that they won’t need to display multiple request dialog boxes.
If you want to stay on top of the best practices for building social applications on Facebook and elsewhere on the web, come to our Social Developer Summit, taking place on June 29th in San Francisco, CA.