The Unofficial Guide to the New Facebook Profile

As announced, Facebook will be releasing the updated version of the Facebook profile by tomorrow. It has taken the Facebook team over five months of development and iterations based on user and developer feedback. It has been a challenging time for developers as well as the Facebook team and many are eagerly anticipating the launch to see what the end result is. There could be backlash from the users as well as developers depending on how things pan out. Regardless of what happens, the profile will eventually change permanently so we figured this would be a great opportunity to give a thorough overview of the changes.

General Facebook Profile Overview

The new profile has been substantially modified from the original for the purpose of making it more visually compelling and reducing the clutter created by multiple applications being installed. Rather than a single profile page, there is a new four-tabbed system by default. The default tabs included are “Wall”, “Info”, “Photos”, and “Boxes”. I go into more detail about each of these tabs below. There is one additional tab which enables users to add an infinite number of their “favorite” Facebook applications, two of which will receive visible profile tabs.

The Wall

Previously, user profiles had a Wall and a mini-feed. The mini-feed displayed recent activities of the users and the wall was a place where friends of that user could post content including notes, photos, videos and any content that user-installed applications would enable the user to post. All of that has now been condensed into one feed. Within that feed, users can select whether or not they would like to view all posts, posts only by the profile owner and posts by others. Below are screenshots of each of the features and a description of the features’ visibility.

Status Update

Just like before Facebook enables users to update their status from within the profile. In addition to updating your status by clicking on the text of your status, a text box has been added to the wall to enable users to update their status from a second location within the profile. That change in status is directly reflected both at the top of the user’s profile as well as within the user’s feed. The status update box is only visible to the profile owner and is not visible when viewing another user’s profile.

Post New Note

Previously, creating a note on Facebook required visiting the “Notes” application. If you aren’t aware of the notes application, it is functions just the way it sounds. You can create notes which includes text and a photo. You can also tag your friends in notes and they will be notified via their feed that they were tagged, driving them to visit and read the note you published. Currently it doesn’t appear as though you can manage the visibility of a note from within your wall. Typically you can limit the visibility of a note to “Everyone”, “Your Networks and Friends”, “Friends of Friends”, specific friends or specific networks you are a member of. I’m guessing that Facebook will soon add this functionality and as they do we will update this guide.

Post Photos

There are a number of ways that Facebook has now enabled users to post photos from within a user’s profile. Currently you can create albums, post photos and take photos from within your own profile. When you visit another person’s profile you can only post a profile and take a photo but not create an album.

Create Album
Rather than visiting the photos application to create an album, Facebook has made it so that you can create an album directly from within your profile. This makes navigating to numerous pages just to upload photos unnecessary.

Post Photo
Once you’ve created an album you can now directly upload your photos to them. Currently there is not a mass upload feature though. Instead you can upload pictures individually. This appears to make more sense for posting photos on your friends’ walls rather than on your own. One thing I don’t know about is if you upload a picture to your friend’s wall, whether or not it will display in your personal albums.

Take Photo
This is a pretty sweet new feature. Now you can take a picture directly from within the wall. This makes a lot of sense for posting on your friends’ walls. It makes the photos about instant communication and communication is what Facebook is all about. I’d imagine that this feature will be used much more heavily.