Apple’s iPhoto ’11 Includes Sharing and Privacy Integrations with Facebook

Apple’s recently launched iLife ‘11 software suite includes new integrations between iPhoto, iMovie, and Facebook. It’s now easier to share photos albums and videos directly to Facebook. Users can also see Likes and comments on those photos within iPhoto, choose basic privacy settings for photos, or post them to the walls of friends. However, the new iPhoto appears to be incompatible with the existing Facebook Exporter for iPhoto plugin.

Despite Facebook and Apple’s iTunes being unable to put together an integration in time for the launch of Apple’s music social network Ping, Facebook CTO Bret Taylor says a partnership is in the works. The enhancements to iLife show that Apple understands the value of Facebook integrations to its users.

To share photos to Facebook in the new iPhoto ‘11, users simply highlight the photos, click “Share” at the bottom of the screen, and select Facebook from among other choices including email and Flickr. Users don’t have to create a new album, and can instead choose to post to their wall, the wall of a friend, or make the photo their profile picture.

Photos posted to Facebook through iPhoto syndicate their comments and Likes back to the software, which users can see by selecting a photo and hit the “Info” button. Users can also view a record of what social sites that photo has been shared to, or tag Facebook friends.

Unfortunately, users can’t reply to comments or otherwise interact with Facebook photos through iPhoto. Users can choose whether to share the photos with the basic privacy buckets of friends, friends of friends, or everyone, but not Groups, lists, or specific people.

Regardless of whether an album was posted to Facebook through iPhoto, users will see all of their Facebook albums in a special section of the iPhoto album view, alongside collections from Flickr or Mobile me.

Lastly, iMovie ‘11 include an option for posting videos directly to Facebook, as well as Vimeo and YouTube.

Facebook has been revamping its own photos product, allowing high-resolution uploads and downloads, a special viewing mode, and drag-and-drop photo and album reordering. As both Facebook photos and iPhoto improve their native interfaces and become more popular, we’ll see whether future integrations take the form of software updates, official plugins, or third-party solutions.

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