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Facebook Offers Real Time Gift Option in iPhone Update



Facebook just released a new update for their iPhone / iPad app and it has a couple of features worth noting.

After a lot of talk, they’ve finally added the ability to send Facebook Gifts to friends – sort of. The app write-up and several news outlets say the feature has been activated but I couldn’t see any sign of it on my account.

If you do have it, you can send a real gift to a friend even if you don’t know they’re address. You simply choose them, pick a gift from the options available, pay for it and send. The receiver gets a notification, they confirm their mailing address and several days later the gift arrives. Pretty cool.

It’s possible that Hurricane Sandy is the one holding up my activation. Cnet says that Facebook’s Gift Event for the press had to be postponed until Nov. 15 because of the storm, so perhaps they decided to hold off on flipping the switch until that time.

I hear tell that in addition to sending teddy bears to friends, the app will also allow you to easily donate money to one of two dozen charities. It’s a nice idea that could promote an increase in giving this holiday season.

On the more mundane side, Facebook 5.1 allows you to upload multiple pictures in one post. They’ve also updated the chat options making it easier to contact the people you speak with most often. They’ve even added an indicator that shows, on average, how long it will take for each person to reply to your message. I have a couple of friends with “3 hours” next to their name, one that says 3 days and one that says 12 minutes. To him I say, turn off your Facebook for an hour and go read a book, it’ll do you good, I promise.

I wonder what my response time is. . . . someone check it out and let me know.