Social networking giant Facebook has launched its App Centre, allowing users to search for and purchase apps from within the site.
The service is currently only available to users in the US, but we have been assured of a launch here in Britain and the rest of the world in the next few weeks.
Announced last month, the App Centre has more than 600 apps available with the US launch, including services like Spotify and Pinterest and popular games like Draw Something.
The App Centre works by finding and displaying apps based on a user’s activity on Facebook, and what apps their friends are using.
When you want to download a mobile app, the App Centre will redirect you to Apple’s App Store or Google Play.
“Success through the App Centre is tied to the quality of an app,” said Facebook engineer Aaron Brady, at the announcement of the service.
“We use a variety of signals, such as user ratings and engagement, to determine if an app is listed in the App Centre.”
The App Centre is Facebook’s first big move since its historic IPO last month, and is seen as a sign of things to come for the social network. But will the service be a success?
The Facebook App Centre will be a success
The App Centre is being seen as something of a shrewd move by some industry analysts, as Facebook has access to the data of more than 900 million members.
This will allow it to offer a bespoke, personalised service, only showcasing the best, most popular apps. It will also encourage developers to create Facebook-only apps, of which Facebook will take a 30 per cent cut of revenue.
The Facebook App Centre won’t be a success
It can sometimes feel like everything Facebook touches turns to gold, with the site expected to reach one billion members before the end of the year.
But will users want to use Facebook to find apps? We know how to use the App Store and Google Play, why do we need Facebook’s help? Of course, the social network will be hoping for in-site apps to really take off and start appeasing investors.