Ever had the urge to Like something on an app so your friends on Facebook can see how much you like something because it is now true that “I like, therefore I am”? It’s a primal urge of the modern social being that until now was left unchecked and unsatisfied. To say the least, the world has been an increasingly mobile yet very hollow place without mobile like capabilities.
Well, never fear. Facebook’s quest for frictionless everything marches merrily along with the introduction of the the mobile like for apps.
From the Facebook developer blog
People share content on the web every day using the Like button. While this has been a key part of how people share, mobile apps have not been able to integrate the functionality. Now they can.
The new Open Graph built-in like action makes it easier for people to share content from your app. While the Like button is a great way to let friends share content from the web back to Facebook, the like action enables you to build your own like buttons for your mobile or web app and drive distribution across Facebook.
You can use the new like action to implement your own like button for a more integrated experience with your app on web and mobile platforms, as Instagram and foursquare have done.
Here is how it looks like (get it?!) on Instagram and foursquare
Notice one thing though. It appears as if the Facebook folks are interested in adding another layer of meaning to a Facebook like in the mobile world. Like may be just too non-committal because, at least in these two instances, the Like function is represented by a red heart. Is a Love function not far behind? How about an Indifferent function with a silhouette of someone shrugging their shoulders or, well, you get the idea.
The one gotcha?
Unlike the Like button, people must authorize your app to publish like stories. Continue to use the Like button to make it easy for anyone who visits your website to share content back to Facebook. Similarly, use the Like button when you want to make it easy for anyone to like your Facebook Page.
Darn those mobile thingys, there’s some friction here! I suspect Mark and the Facebooks will figure something out to get around those pesky privacy and security concerns. After all, there are shareholders to satisfy!